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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE 

Daniel C. Roper, Secretaru 

BLREAU OF FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC COMMERCE 
Frederick M. Feiker, Director 

EUROPEAN 
MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 
IN 1932 




Trade Inrormatlon Bulletin No. $13 



UNITED STATES 
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 
WASHINGTON : 1933 



For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, Washington, D. C. 



Price 5 cents 



FOREWORD 



111 spite of the existence in intensified form of the same obstacles 
which confi-onted the American fihn trade in Europe last year, that 
r(><rion still contributes far more in revenue than all the rest of the 
world (exclusive of the United States), and in spite of increasing 
competition. Amei-iciin pictures still connnand the majority of the 
showings in nearly all Eur()])ean countries. In the United King- 
dom, for example, where much is made of the competition from 
British-made pictures, our share of the market (for features) is 
still (;i).5 percent as against 72. G percent in 1931. However, a de- 
tailed survey of the European market is highly necessary at this 
time, for pitfalls in the film situation in Europe are steadily increas- 
ing and these should be carefully analyzed. It is hoped that the 
facts and figures heie i)resented will be of assistance in this respect. 
^ This bulletin is the sixth annual publication of the Bureau of 
Foi-eign and Domestic Commerce on the European motion-picture 
industry. Owing to necessary economies, that portion relating to 
the United Kingdom which last year appeared as a separate bulletin 
lias been incoi-porated into this bulletin. Furthermore, the bulletin 
itself has been much reduced in size and hence provides only a 
general statistical picture of the film industry in the various Euro- 
pean countries. However, in many cases allusion is made to the 
fact that more detailed information on a given topic is on file in 
the Motion Picture Division, and it is hoped that anyone interested 
will not hesitate to })rocure this supplementary data.' Considerable 
information on many points only lightly touched upon, such as 
foreign exchange controls, is available from other divisions of the 
Bureau. 
June 1933. 

Frederick M. Feiker, 

Director^ Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce. 



EUROPEAN MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY IN 1932 



INTRODUCTION 

By American Trade Commissioner George R. Canty, Berlin 

The European film iiulustiy stru<>gled through 1932 in the hope 
of preserving itself in face of abnormal world economic conditions. 
It made notable contributions in the way of sound-film production 
and development and cinema construction and fared infinitely better 
than many other industries. Nevertheless, it was in poor condition 
at the end of tli,e year and had still to face a more difficult 19H;^,, 
when the cumulative effects of the high expenditures and reduced 
revenues of 1932 would have to be met. 

The trade in Great Britain continued to make rapid strides: its 
production rose to a point within reach of the world leaders, while 
local market conditions probably surpassed those of any other coun- 
try or region. Scandinavia kept abreast of its satisfactory status of 
the previous year, but in all other countries, with a possible excep- 
tion or two, the trade was so badly affected by disrupted economic 
circumstances as to border on chaos. 

Feature-film producticm in Europe practically totaled that of 1931, 
and investments in feature production alone, incduding exchange 
depreciations, were only 5.7 percent under the par value registrations 
of the previous year. In the face of a gloomy world outlook, this 
investment was probably ill-timed, and evidenced eitiier a sheer 
inability or a reluctance to gage costs to ])rospective revenue in 1933. 
Dubbing costs were recorded for the first time and amounted to 
approximately $1,000,000, thus bringing total feature i)r()duction 
costs to within 2.3 percent of 1931. Theater installations of repro- 
ducing sets numbered 4,118 during the year, or 21.5 percent less than 
in 1932, and marked a rapid advance toAvard the saturation point. 
The determination to place the cinema situation on a sound-film basis 
was effectively tested, and 32 percent more houses were built or 
reconstructed during the year than during 1931. New seatage added 
was 6 percent less, indicating more concentration on the medium- 
and smaller-size theaters. As in recent years, this progress centered 
in Great Britain and France, but it is noteworthy that Austria, 
Czechoslovakia, and Spain improved their cinenui situations con- 
siderably, the first two having given chief attention to the run- 
down, small type of house. Little extension of wired studios was 
expected, inasmuch as the high-water mark was considered to have 
been practically reached during 1931; nevertheless. 15 new studios 
and 26 stages were added during 1932. Sjiain. the Xetheilands, 
Finland, Turkey, and Yugoslavia built sound studios of one kind or 
another for the first time. 

( 1 ) 



2 



FILM PRODUCTION 

As in the United States, the prevailing depression had little or no 
effect on production activities. In all, 568 features were turned out 
and 126 features Avere dubbed at an estimated cost of $29,413,500. 
In 1931, 570 features were produced for approximately $30,147,000. 
As previously explained, accurate information on production re- 
sults is not entirely available, inasmuch as complete statistics are not 
kept regularly in Europe. This situation is accentuated because in 
certain leadirig countries of production, where a reasonable attempt 
is made to keep statistics, no records have been made of foreign ver- 
sions made for export; hence, the necessity of resorting to trade data 
for final estimates. 

The table below shows the estimated number of feature films, 
original and dubbed, during 1932, by countries, with estimated 
negative costs involved, as compared with the previous year. 

European Production and Dubbing of Feature Films. 1931 and 1932, by 

Countries 



Country 


1931 


1932 


Fea- 
ture 
films 
pro- 
duced 


Estimated 
cost 


Regular features 


Dubbed 


Total 


Num- 
ber 


Cost 


Num- 
ber 


Cost 


Num- 
ber 


Cost 


Austria 


7 
1 
4 
27 
6 

143 
164 
141 
2 
4 
31 
1 
10 
1 
1 
3 
13 
2 
2 


$115,000 
4,000 
39, 000 
635, 000 
100, 000 
70,000 
7, 150, 000 
9, 850, 000 
9, 750, 000 
20,000 
150, 000 
1, 250, 000 
20,000 
200, 000 
90,000 
6,000 
45,000 
600,000 
25,000 
28,000 


11 


$400, 000 






11 


$400, 000 


Baltic States 






Belgium 


2 

25 
5 
3 
142 
145 
161 


30, 000 
940, 000 
75,000 
35, 000 
7, 000, 000 
8, 975, 000 
8, 750, 000 






2 
28 
7 
3 

192 
163 
161 


30,000 
955, 000 
83,000 
35,000 
7, 500, 000 
9, 191, 000 
8, 750, 000 


Czechoslovakia 

Denmark 

Finland 


3 
2 


15,000 
8,000 


France.- 

Germany - 

Great Britain.. 


50 
18 


500, 000 
216, 000 


Greece and Albania 






Hungary 


12 
21 


500,000 
850, 000 






12 

76 


500,000 
1, 100, 000 


Italy 

Norway . 


55 


250, 000 


Poland 


8 
1 
1 

7 
23 


160, 000 
10,500 






8 
1 


160, 000 
10, 500 


Portugal 






Rumania 






Spain 

Sweden... 


150, 000 
500, 000 


3 


9,000 


10 
23 


159, 000 
500,000 


Switzerland 






Turkey 


2 


40,000 






2 


40, 000 


Total 






570 


30, 147, 000 


568 


1 28, 415, 500 


131 


998, 000 


699 


I 29, 413, 500 



Figured on average rates of exchange during 1932. 



The table shows that production centered in Great Britain, Ger- 
many, and France, which countries accounted for 73.5 percent of the 
European output (dubbed versions included) , and 86.5 percent of the 
total negative investment. Feature-film output increased in Great 
Britain to a point where any further increase might result in over- 
production. German output declined, as it will probably continue 
to do in 1933 on account of the shortage of film capital, while France 
maintained its rate of the previous year. It is believed, however, 
that the future is likely to see a drop in this respect in both France 
and Gerniany and an increase in the number of features dubbed, in 
view ot the legal necessity of dubbing imported films in the countrv 
of distribution. Inasmuch as the same requirement holds good for 



3 



Italy, it is believed that a similar situation will prevail in this coun- 
try, too, and there is a gradual tendency in this direction in Spain. 
Increased feature output in Austria and Hungary was due entirely 
to the economic necessity of plowing frozen assets into local manu- 
facturing, Swedish production increased in proportion to reduced 
royalty costs secured through the use of local recording equipment 
instead of German, which had previously been in operation. 

NEW MOTION-PICTURE THEATER CONSTRUCTION 

No general statistics are available in Europe as to cinemas that 
closed their doors to business, so it is impossible to estimate what 
change occurred during the year in the total seating capacity. It is 
estimated in trade circles that this mortality was very large, how- 
ever, in view of the general economic depression and the inability 
to adapt houses to sound-film requirements. 

Fairly reliable statistics as to new construction and important 
renovations are available, though, and it is conservatively calculated 
that 490 cinemas, with a total seating capacity of 303,339 were added, 
as compared with 373 theaters and 322,568 seats in 1930 and 428 
theaters and 341,422 seats in 1931. This, in face of adverse condi- 
tions, when a decidedly downward trend might have been expected, 
is a remarkable achievement. Germany alone of the more important 
countries failed to show any general improvement, a situation which 
was unquestionably due both to the possibility that the country is 
already overseated and the fact that money was too expensive for any 
desired expansion. 

The following table shows the estimated number of new cinemas 
and important reconstructions, as well as added seatage, in 1932, as 
compared with 1931. 

European Cinema Construction and Seat Additions, 1931 and 1932, bt 

Countries 



Country 



1931 



New cine- 
mas 



Austria 

Baltic States 

Belgium 

Bulgaria 

Czechoslovakia 

Denmark 

France 

Germany 

Great Britain 

Greece and Albania. 

Hungary 

Italy -- 

Netherlands 

Norway 

Poland-- 

Portugal -- 

Rumania 

Spain 

Sweden 

Switzerland 

Turkey 

Yugoslavia 

Egypt - 

Total 



5 
4 
7 
2 

100 
1 

84 

25 
100 
1 

10 



Seats added 



428 



6, 400 
1,480 
9, 825 
900 
40,000 
800 
64,219 
22, 500 
143, 000 
1,250 
3, 708 



1932 



New cine- 
mas 



2,900 



8,000 
10, 000 
20, 000 
1,550 
3,000 

"i.'sso' 



341,442 



75 
11 
9 
12 
100 
1 
72 
29 
79 
3 
3 
7 
6 
2 
15 
1 
7 
36 
12 
1 
1 
3 



490 



Seats added 



15, 400 
3, 770 
15, 400 
2, 350 
25, 000 
700 
50, 000 
14,200 
101,309 
3,770 
1, 175 
9, 550 
2,500 
1,250 
4,000 
850 
2, 300 
36,000 
5,000 
800 
800 
900 
7,115 

303, 339 



4 



V.IRED CINEMAS 

Tho addition of 4.118 sound-equipped cinemas, as compared witii 
5.249 durino- the previous year, is a distinct reflection on the ener- 
netic campai<rn of sound-equipment companies operatini»; in the 
European field, as well as the courage of European exhibitors in 
conimittintr themselves to future necessities, in the face of credit 
limitations. Thus the end of 1932 witnessed 10.847 wired theaters 
in Europe (Russia excepted). It is connnon opinion in trade circles 
that tiie satnration point in cinema wirings is almost reached and 
that during 1933, save in the case of newly built houses, wiring will 
be confined to replacements or the installation of cheap sets in the 
.snudler theaters. 

The table below lists the number of theateis wired for the repro- 
duction of sound films, by countries, during 1931 and 1932, and the 
total as of the end of the latter years. 

TiiKATKRS Wired in Europe. 1931 and 1932 by Countries 



Country 



Austria 

Baltic States 

Bela;ium 

Bulgaria 

Czechoslovakia 

Denmark 

ERvpt 

Finland 

France 

Germany 

Great Britain 

Greece and Albania. 
Hungary 



Dur- 
ing 
1931 



•-'38 
53 

149 
14 

332 
75 



25 
927 
925 
1.034 
33 
147 



Dur- 
ing 
1932 



149 
50 

164 
62 

260 
51 
6 
22 

627 
1,000 

233 
36 
52 



Total 
on 
Dec. 31, 
1932 



559 
160 
401 
109 
750 
268 
71 
120 
2,077 
3, 500 
4,314 
99 
250 



Country 



Italy 

Netherlands 

Norway 

Poland 

Portugal 

Rumania 

Spain 

Sweden 

Switzerland- 
Turkey 

Yugoslavia- - 

Total. 



Dur- 
ing 
1931 



350 
23 
53 
32 
27 
135 
238 
299 
68 
7 
05 



5,249 



Dur- 
ine 
1932 



429 
22 
36 

200 
65 
25 

487 
42 
30 
17 
53 



41, 118 



Total 
on 
Dec. 31, 
1932 



949 
218 
239 
350 
107 
220 
939 
718 
201 
44 
184 



16, 847 



SOUND-FILM STUDIOS 



There were 15 new studios with sound equipment built during 1932 
and 26 new stages added to the total of the previous year. The new 
stiulios were of the smaller type, while the greater part of the new 
stages were additions to already existing studios. Expansion during 
1933 will probably be confined to small countries not already in the 
.sound-film production field and to new equipment for dubbing 
purposes. 

In view of the different makes of recording equipment, full details 
as to the exact type of equipment and capacity are not available, but 
the following table shows the total number of studios equipped for 
sound as of December 31, 1932, as compared with the corresponding 
period of the previous year. 



Euuoi'KAN Studios Equii'I'kd kor Soi nd. and ]n;i2, n\ (!ountkik8 



Country 


1931 


1932 


Studios 
equipped 


Total 
stages 


Studros 
equipped 


Total 
stages 


Austria. 


3 
1 
1 
1 


4 
1 
2 
4 


3 
1 1 
2 
3 
> 1 
14 
13 
17 
2 
1 
1 
2 
1 1 
5 
1 

" 1 


4 
1 
4 
7 
1 

32 
32 
33 
3 
3 
1 
2 
1 
8 
1 
1 


Belgium. . 


Czechoslovakia 


Denmark. 


Finland. 


France 


11 
13 
16 
2 
1 


28 
32 
26 
2 
3 


Germany. 


Great Britain. . . . .. 


Hungary 


Italy 




Poland 


2 


2 


Spain . 


Sweden 


2 


4 


Turkey--- 


Yugoslavia.. - 






Total --- 






53 


108 1 68 

1 


134 





' Partly equipped studios. 



RESTRICTIVE LEGISLATION 

Official restrictions continued in increased force during- the year. 
In the smaller countries exchange controls that influenced the use 
of frozen credits for production purposes unquestionably did much 
to maintain their justification, in the official sense of the word. This 
applied particularly to Austria and Hungary. Tlie fihn restrictions 
in Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia made it (juite impossible for the 
majority of the American distributing companies to release new 
products, and their activities for the greater j^art of the year were 
confined to the continued distribution of old films. The British 
Films Act, a 10-year law. continued to function in the gradual 
degrees set forth when the law was passed in 1927. The German 
" kcntingent ", regulations for the administration of which are 
issued annually in July, became soniewliat more severe with the 
requirement that all foreign products to be released in dubbed form 
must henceforth be dubbed in Germany; that the number of im- 
ported dubbed features could not exceed 50 j)ercent of the total 
number of features authorized for importation by any (-ompany, and 
that the allocation of permits may be refused for films whose pro- 
ducers distribute internationally so-called anti-German films. The 
French film law was amended in one sense in favor of foreigfn films, 
but in another decidedly contrarywise, since it limited the exhibition 
of foreign language films to 10 Frencli theaters, 5 in Paris and 
5 throughout the rest of the country. 

Attempts were evident in several countries to formulate i)lans 
for official, quasi-official, or private distribution monopolies, wliicli 
would, in elfect. compel all foreign fihu exchanges to close up busi- 
ness. In most cases these did not go into effect, but it is still evident 
that the movement has not died down and that it will subsequently 
in certain instances be tried again. 

Serious rumors of contingents occurred in Spain. Ruiuania. and 
Poland. 



6 



Besides Germany, France adopted laws or other official measures 
requiring that tihns intended for local release in dubbed versions 
be finished locally. 

EUROPEAN DEMAND 

If the rear under review witnessed an}' changed demand for films, 
it was probably emphasized in the case of dubbed versions, which 
definitely indicated that, after a couple of years of experience, their 
potentialities will be limited unless their processing considerably 
improves. Their possibihties, however, increase proportionately 
M-ith the popularity of the story, the case employed, and reduced 
dialog, as domestic production struggles against high negative 
costs and small release possibilities. Limited language markets, on 
the other hand, place the present high costs of dubbing in the class 
of risk, with the result that average program films are more often 
than not considered as unfit for distril3ution in this form. 

Foreign language versions, excepting English and German, are 
seldom released on the Continent. Scandinavia and the Netherlands 
are fertile fields for English and German dialog films, particularly 
when released with superimposed title in the native language. Eng- 
lish dialog films enjoy popularity in Paris, but limited distribution 
reduces their financial possibilities. 

It would seem that films in the language of the country where 
used should have first call in popularity. This is not alwaj's so, 
however. If they are cheaply made, as experience over the past 
2 years shows, they can not stand up in competition with the better- 
made foreign product, and thus they prove financial failures. This 
is especially the case in the smaller production countries, Sweden 
excepted, w^here, it is reported, last year's domestic product met 
with some financial success, due unquestionabl}' to the absence of 
hi^h royalty charges on production. In both France and Germany 
only the better-than-average films, regardless of cost — and very 
few cheap films were made — were financiall}' successful, though this 
may have been due in no small degree to the effect of the prevailing 
depression on cinemas. 

As previously reported, it is evident that, so far as concerns the 
American trade, the best sales prospects lie in the release of (1) fea- 
tures in the local language, for they help sell films made in the 
United States; (2) dubbed films, if not in the language of the coun- 
try in which distributed, then in German or French, if either of 
these be preferred to English; (3) English dialog features with 
superimposed titles in the local language and other adaptations if 
possible ; and (4) synchronized versions. 

THE SITUATION IN GENERAL 

Though trade conditions have sporadically been off balance for 2 
or 3 years, it will probably be recorded that 1932 found the economic 
depression universal. So far as Europe is concerned, France, 
Switzerland, the Scandinavian countries, and Yugoslavia joined the 
other countries that had previously experienced the full effects of the 
depression. The severity of the situation may be further adduced 
from the fact that of the 25 countries covered in this report, 17 
applied exchange controls of varying degrees, while 8 were off the 



7 



gold standard. Add to these the legislative restrictions, previously 
mentioned, and it will be appreciated why the American film trade 
suffered a very trying year. 

Encouragement was to be found in spots, however. The American 
film maintained its prestige everywhere, and what unsatisfactory 
business resulted was fundamentally due more to the hampering 
effects of governmental restrictions than to any decreased demand 
for American film products. American film companies in Great 
Britain had a very active year, despite the depreciated pound 
sterling; their efforts in the Scandinavian countries met with satis- 
factory returns. They also continued to dominate tlie situation in 
Poland, owing to the continued ban on German dialog films. In 
other countries, Belgium possibly alone excepted, results were not up 
to expectations. 

The American basic position is hardly different from that reported 
a year ago. American film exporters should continue to note the 
dissimilarities of European cinema demand in various countries and 
the consequent necessity for capable, energetic local company man- 
agement. The cooperation of American studios in producing, or 
adapting films with foreign appeal, and constant vigilance in the 
study and treatment of governmental restrictions are leading sub- 
jects that should also receive most careful attention in the home 
offices in reviving trade upon the lifting of the depression. 

The American company executives are now fortified with suffi- 
cient knowledge, resulting from several years of sound-film experi- 
mentation in foreign markets, as well as evidence that European 
cinemas are now within reach of the saturation point in wiring 
equipment, to place them in a position to gage standard market 
possibilities. Kevenues will, of course, continue to be restricted so 
long as the various countries attempt to curtail commodity imports 
and to redress their trade balances by means of restrictions on 
exchange. It is estimated that these particular restrictions cost 
American companies a loss of 15 to 20 percent, as funds are remitted 
to home offices in one form or another. 

It is consequently believed that any increased film business dur- 
ing 1933, not due to a better product than heretofore, will be only 
in proportion to the success of the various countries in mitigating 
the exchange restrictions by some means that will restore their 
merchandise balances by stimulating exports to active world 
markets. As this, in effect, would indicate the lifting of the depres- 
sion, it would definitely be the sign of better prospects for Ameri- 
can companies. The film trade, as much as any other, depends in 
the final analysis on the general healthiness of a country's trade and 
industry. 

ALBANIA 

By Cloyce K. Huston, Secretary of American Legation 

Production. — There is no production of films in Albania, nor are 
there any studios in the country. 

Distribution. — American films are the most popular, with Ger- 
man, French, and Italian next, in the order named. Fihns from 
the United States are in English with subtitles in the local language. 

Ecchihition.—No theaters were built during the year and none 

175174—33 2 



8 



wir^^d The situation is therefore the same as it was on December 
sl mi at which time 0 theaters were beino- wired out of a total 
of'll in'tlie country. All have German equipment. 

AUSTRIA 

By Assistant Commercial Attache D. F. Spencer. Vienna 

rroducf ion. —There were 1'2 features produced in Austria in 1932, 
10 in German, and 2 French versions of 2 of the 10 German-language 
films Three were produced by AUianz and 1 each by Dr. Ernst 
Wanek and Mondial in Vienna (the latter also produced a French 
version). Lothar Stark produced (plus a French version of 1 
of these), and Ondra Laniac and Oskar Glueck each produced 1. 
The latter were German companies which were unable to get their 
rental receipts out of Austria because of foreign-exchange restric- 
tions, and so used these receipts for production within Austria. 
These concerns also secured permits for the distribution of German 
films in Austria. There were also 34 shorts (all in German) pro- 
duced, 82 by 17 Austrian companies and 2 by Ondra Laniac. Tlie 
studios used were Sascha and Selenophon ; the former has recently 
acquired the old Vita studio on the Rosenhuegel and is expiipping it 
as a sound studio. For 1933 probably a dozen films will be produced, 
chiefly by German companies in the studios noted above. 

Distribution. — During 1932, 242 sound features and 8 silents were 
shown. Of these 146 came from Germany, 72 from the United States, 

13 from France, and the other 11 from Italy, Russia, Czechoslovakia, 
and other countries. Five hundred and four sound shorts were 
shown, almost equally divided between Germany and the United 
States. Of the American films, about 25 were in English with super- 
imposed titles, and an almost equal number of films dubbed into 
German, Avhich had poor success at the box office. There were a feAv 
originals with German casts. It is conceded that the original Ger- 
man versions are much more popular than the dubbed variety. 

Exhibition.— About 63 new theaters Avere opened, adding 14,000 
seats, and 12 were reconstructed, adding 1,400 seats; 149 theaters 
were wired, all with sound on film. On December 31, 1932, a total 
of 559 theaters were wired, out of 913 in the countrv. Of these, 258 
have miscellaneous or locally assembled units, 183 Klangfilm, 41 
American equipment, 29 Koerting, 24 Phillips (Dutch), and 23 
Schrack. Only 9 are for sound on disk alone. 

Legislation. — The Austrian contingent regulations (as outlined in 
Foreign Market Bulletin No. T-55, issued by the Motion Picture 
Division on September 5, 1931, and supplemented on pages 13 and 

14 of Trade Information Bulletin No. 797, The Motion-Picture 
Industry in Continental Europe in 1931) still exist with changes of 
a minor nature. Amendments have been made to encourage the pro- 
duction of short subjects, and it is possible that laws compelling film 
miporters to have their positives printed in Austria may be passed. 
1^ ilms are also influenced by the drastic currency control liow in effect. 

General.— ^n-ie year in general was a very bad one for the film 
industry. The quality of films shown, particularly from Germany, 
was much poorer than in the 1931 seasoin. Box office receipts 
dropped about 40 percent. 



9 



BELGIUM 

By Commercial Attache R. C. Miller, Brussels 

Production. — Two features in French were produced by Studio 
Lux in Brussels. These were " Le phis joli reve " (2,300 meters) 
and " Le cadavre no. 5 " (2,200 meters). The cost of both was about 
900,000 francs. Twenty-four shorts. 12 in French and 12 in Flemish, 
were produced at a cost of about 400,000 francs. Thei-e was no 
change in the studio situation in 1932 and none is anticipated for 
1933. Two or three films will probably be produced. 

Dhtribufion. — About 450 sound films were shown, alona' with loO 
old silents. Owing to the language question, French-language films 
(including French versions or American films) were shown almost 
exclusively in the Walloon or southern half of the country, while in 
the Flemish section 80 percent of the films shown were American, 
with 15 percent German and 5 percent French. The most i)()pulMr 
American films are in English with subtitles in French or Flemish, 
though good dubbed French films featuring world-famous artists 
are popular in the Walloon districts. Dubbed films are losing their 
popularity. 

Exhihit'/on. — Seven new theaters were built, these being the Metro- 
pole in Brussels (4,000 seats); the Capitole (1,500 seats). Cameo 
(1,500 seats), and Kinox (1,100 seats) in Antwerp; the Capitole 
(2,300 seats) in Ghent; the Novelty (1.400 seats) in Malines; and 
the Cine Plaza (1,000 seats) in Deurne. The first thi-ee have Ameri- 
can equipment. In addition, the Hippodrome (2,000 seats) in Ant- 
werp and the Cineac (600 seats) in Brussels were reconstructefl. 
There is a strong trend toward the building of large picture houses, 
there being in Brussels alone one 4,000-seat house, two of 2,500 seats 
each, and a 3,000-seat house ner.rly finished. About 1G4 houses were 
wired in 1932, making a grand total at the end of the year of 401 
wired theaters out of 650. Of these, 90 have American equipment, 
133 locally assembled, 49 Bauer, 41 Philisonor, 22 Tobis, 20 (xau- 
nu)nt, and the rest of miscellaneous manufacture. 

Legislation. — There is no legislation in force having adverse efJ'ect 
on American films. 

General. — The Belgian film trade reacted successfully to the criti- 
cal conditions during 1932. Attendarice decreased to some extent, 
but rentals decreased by 20 to 30 ])ercent, whicli in turn was offset 
by the increased number of films released. 

BULGARIA 

By Consul John McArdle, Sofia 

Production. — No studios for the production of either sound or 
silent films exist in Bulgaria and it is not likely that this condition 
will change during the coming year. 

Distribution. — The Bulgarian censorship board reports that 294 
films totaling 481,937 meters were censored during 1932, of which 
256 (445,240 meters) were sound and 38 (36,697 meters) were silent. 
Of the sound films 112 (203,968 meters), or 45 percent, came from 
Germany, 107 (193,237 meters) or 36 percent came from the 
L^nited States, 19 (16,085 meters) or 7 percent, came from England, 



10 



^"^^^'Froiidi or German were most favored. Dubbed films are not 



iisin<r 



theaters with a total capacity of 2,350 seats 
were opened during the year and 7 with a seating capacity of 1,900 
seats were closed. Sixty-two houses were wired, 39 with sound on 
fihn and '2'd with sound on disk. Thus at the end of 1932 there 
were 145 theaters in Bulgaria, of which 109 were wired. Most of 
the installations are a combination of imported and locally made 

^'^LeokJation. — Drastic legislation against the purchase of foreign 
excliano-e to pay for film imports had serious consequences for the 
motion^picture companies. . . ^ , . 

General. The general economic depression m Bulgaria caused 

a drop of about 30 percent in the gross receipts of theaters, even 
though admission prices were reduced 20 percent. 

CZECHOSLOVAKIA 

By Dr. Alors Broft, Office of Commercial Attache, Prague 

Twenty -five features were produced by 13 com- 
panies, all located in Prague. These were as follows: A. B. Film, 6 
(Czechoslovak) ; Elektafilm, 4 (3 Czechoslovak and a French ver- 
sion of one of these) ; Slaviafilm, 4 (2 Czechoslovak and a French 
and German version of one of them) ; Wolframfilm, 2 (a Czechoslo- 
vak and German version of one film; Grafofilm and Meissnerfilm, 
1 (Czechoslovak) : Arkofilm and Meissnerfilm, 1 (Czechoslovak) ; 
Oceanfilm, Moldaviafilm, Leon Gaumont, Melodyfilm, Lloydfilm, 
Primusfilm, Dafafilm, 1 each (Czechoslovak) ; the last-named also 
produced one silent. No sound features were dubbed except two 
educations of French origin and one American film. No shorts 
were made. 

The sound features were all made at the A.B. studio equipped 
with Tobias sound-on-film recorders. They averaged about $40,000 
in cost (except the silent, which cost about $9,000). As for the 
A.B. studio, it has two film recorders and two stages; since only 
one picture at a time can be made, it can turn out about 20 features 
annually. In order to meet increasing demand, a new studio was 
started by A.B. in 1931, but only one stage is yet in operation, the 
other to be completed by July 1933. The capacity of the new 
studio should run to about 80 films a year. In spite of rumors that 
other studios may be built to compete with A.B., nothing tangible 
has emerged, for it is felt that Czechoslovak production will not 
support more than one studio. 

Even though domestic production was under the favorable influ- 
ence of a quota, which enabled the number of features to increase by 
four m 1932, local film producers for the most part lack sound finan- 
cial backing. Their films being in the Czech language and dealing 
entirely with local subjects, they had to bear the handicap of a 
limited market. Production plans for 1933 are therefore rather 
vague. Through the use of the new studio, sound production can be 



11 



doubled and the haste now used in producing Czech films can be 
eliminated. So far A.B. Film (the most substantial producer) has 
arranged for 12 features. One is nearly finished, including several 
foreign versions, and other companies have announced one or more 
sound films. The net total is rather vague, however. 

Distribution. — As a result of quota and foreign-exchange restric- 
tions, a heavy decline occurred in the number of films distributed, 
amounting to nearly 40 percent, affecting especially sound features 
and sound shorts. Germany took the lead, owing to the voluntary 
withdrawal of American companies, with the release of 353 films 
(338,185 meters), of which 84 (207,175 meters) were features, 15 
silent, and 40 sound. Twenty-two of these were supplied in the first 
3 months before the quota took effect. Czechoslovakia came next 
with 274 films (143,050 meters), of which 23 were features (1 silent) ; 
France, Russia, Italy, Poland, Austria, and Great Britain followed 
in that order, with 44 (65,760 meters) from France, 22 of which were 
sound features; Russia provided 8 features (5 silent); Italy and 
Poland, 5 sound features each ; Austria, 4 sound features ; and Great 
Britain, 1 sound feature. 

Most American films were in English with superimposed titles. 
Films dubbed in German were not allowed to be shoAvn and no direct- 
shot versions were exhibited. The popularity of American films suf- 
fered considerably from the absence of good new films, owing to the 
withdrawal of American companies. In general, society pictures 
were most popular. 

Exhibition. — About 100 theaters were either constructed or reno- 
vated, adding in the neighborhood of 25,000 seats; 260 theaters were 
wired, 170 with Czech equipment, 45 with German, 43 with Dutch, 
and 2 with American. All of these were for sound on film. As of 
December 31, 1932, out of 1,950 theaters (750,000 seats), 750 theaters 
were wired, leaving 1,410 theaters, nearly all small, unwired. In 
addition, about 200 reproducers were used for traveling shows and 
100 more by the Czech Army. By nationality of equipment, 378 had 
Czech devices, 265 German, 52 Dutch, 47 American, 6 French, and 2 
Austrian. Nearly all of these are sound on film. 

Legislation. — Toward the close of 1931 the Czechoslovak Govern- 
ment introduced various measures to cut down film imports so as to 
relieve the domestic film market from foreign competition, check the 
increasing menace of German films flooding Czechoslovak theaters, 
and establish a subsidy for the local industry. The system of control 
of foreign film, imports was tightened up substantially in the first 
half of 1932. On April 23, 1932, an import quota was introduced 
and made retroactive to November 11, 1931, fixing at 240 the number 
of sound feature films (shorts, educational films, newsreels, etc., not 
included) to be imported up to December 31, 1932. This represented 
a decrease of about one third in the number of foreign feature films 
usually imported. The quota was later reduced to 200, then to 160, 
and finally to 120. In connection with the import quota the " kon- 
tingentschein " system (import quota certificate system) Avas intro- 
duced, which required importers of films to surrender one " kon- 
tingentschein " for each film imported after April 23, and one for 
each film previously imported between January 1 and April 23. The 
price of the " kontingentschein " was fixed first at 15,000 Czechoslo- 



12 



vak crowii.s ($450) on a basis of seven permits for each local film 
produced. Later it was increased to 17,500 crowns ($525) on a 0 
to 1 basis, ami finally to 21.000 crowns ($630) on a 5 to 1 basis, which 
is still in force. The importers had two alternatives to choose from, 
either to ])rodiice sound features locally in order to secure import 
quota certificates, or to purchase them at the fixed prices from local 
film producei's. 

In view of this, the major American film companies refused to 
produce films in Czechoslovakia or purchase " kontingentscheine " 
and stopped importing]: and releasing new films subject to import 
restrictions and delivered only products contracted for before April 
23, U>32. The American companies took this attitude because they 
consider the Czechoslovak quota system a discrimination against the 
United States and because it does not dilferentiate between the 
earning power of English and German dialog pictures. The latter 
have a market throughout the country, which has a German popula- 
tion of 3,500,000, while the English-language pictures can be shown 
only in a relatively small number of theaters in the population 
centers. As a result, many American pictures earn so little that 
they cannot stand the amount of taxation provided in the 
regulations. 

The lack of American films in Czechoslovakia was not serious 
at first, but in the autumn the shortage became increasingly acute 
and affected the exhibitors to such an extent that they have since 
been urging the government to do something to put an end to the , 
situation. At present it is uncertain how the controversy will be 
solved. 

General. — The striking feature in the Czechoslovak motion-picture 
situation during 1932 was the introduction of a rigid import quota 
on sound features connected with an indirect support of domestic 
film industry, which resulted in the withdrawal of American film 
companies from the Czechoslovak market. The ensuing shortage of 
sound features increased sales possibilities for German films, which 
had been gaining predominance in Czechoslovakia since 1931. On 
the other hand, the Czechoslovak film industry benefitted from the 
import quota system, inasmuch as it received a subsidy of 105,000 
Czechoslovak crowns (about $4,500) for every domestic sound fea- 
ture produced, by selling " kontingentscheine " (import quota cer- i 
tificates) to film distributors. 

DENMARK 

By Assistant Trade Commissioner Paul H. Pearson, Copenhagen 

P roduction. — There are two major producing companies in Den- 
mark. One is the Nordisk Tonefilm, which maintains a studio with ^ 
4 stages and 4 recorders (Petersen and Poulsen), 2 permanent, 1 
jiortable. and 1 for synchronization. It produced in 1932 three 
feature pictures in Danish: " Skal vi vaedde en Million " (Shall We ^ 
Bet a Million I ) , Tretten Aar (Thirteen Years) , and Odds 777. Each 
was around 2,200 meters long and cost 60,000 to 70,000 crowns. In 
addition, the company dubbed one film from German and one from i 
Swedish into Danish, and is reported to be dubbing an American film * 



13 



into Danish. The other company is Palladium Tonifilmselskab (suc- 
cessor to the silent-film company Palladium) with 2 stages and 1 
permanent and 1 portable film recorder (Bang & Olufsen). One 
lalking film was produced in 1932, " Han, Hun, og Hamlet " (He, 
Mie, and Hamlet). Besides these, an animated cai-toon company was 
formed during the latter part of the year, which plans 8 ])roductions 
in 1933 with versions in Danish, English, French, and German. 
JNordisk plans 6 talking features in 1933, 5 light comedies, and 1 
crime drama, while Palladium will make 3 " Pat and Patachon " 
features. There are rumors that another major producing company 
will be organized early in the summer of 1933. 

Disf ribuf wn.— Including copies, 1,260 films were censored in 1932, 
of which 1,029 were sound and 231 silent. Of these, G73 came from 
the United States, 297 were Danish, 226 German, 30 British, 14 
Swedish, 13 French, and 7 came from other countries. The Ameri- 
can films released were originals with Danish subtitles. The Danish 
films shown were the most popular (they were popular in Norway 
and Sweden also) on account of the familiarity of characters and 
language. Dubbed films have a chance of success, but the films 
dubbecl by Nordisk did not prove very successful, though they ran 
better in the Provinces than in Copenhagen. 

Exhibition —One theater (the Windsor in Copenliagen, seating 
700) was built during the year. Out of a total of 346 theaters in 
Denmark seating 90,042, 268 are now wired, 51 having been wired in 
1932. Danish and German manufacturers, especially Petersen and 
Poulsen, Bofa, Tobis, and Zeiss Ikon, have most of the business. 
American equipments number approxiiuately 21. Total box-office 
receipts averaged about 12,000,000 kronen in 1932. In 24 theaters in 
Copenhagen, seating 16,983 people, which play to more people than 
all the other Danish theaters combined, gross box-office receipts for 
the first 6 months of 1932 were 3,771,355 kronen, as against 3,552,667 
kronen during the 1931 period, representing 26 theaters seating 
16,997. 

Legislation. — While the Danish import trade is governed by a law 
requiring exchange certificates, films have been on the free list since 
September 1. There is a large amusement tax, amounting to 40 per- 
cent of the admission. A new motion-picture law is being con- 
sidered. It provides for revised license regulations, decreeing that a 
portion of the program be devoted to Danish films or films of an 
educational character. The latter j)r()vision was suggested by the 
Dansk Kulturfilm, a semigovernmental bureau financed by surplus 
revenues from film censorship, which produces, purchases, and sells 
historical and cultural films. Further suggestion was made that a 
" film central " be formed, which would purchase all films for exhibi- 
tion in Denmark and which would pay renting companies only 15 
percent net, instead of 30 percent as at present. 

General. — The economic situation brought about reduced attend- 
ance in spite of lower admission prices. But, through a general 
shift in attendance from small low-priced theaters to the large and 
more exi)ensive Copenhagen theaters, more revenue was realized than 
during the previous year. Danish films made considerable gains, 
though American prestige held uj) well. 



14 



FINLAND 

By Trade Commissioner Frederick C. Sommer, Helsingfor, 

Production.-TXxv^o features in Finnish wei-e produced in 1932. 
Each was about 2,500 meters long and he hrst t^YO were produced 
bv Suon Fihni O.Y., which also xjcordec the sound for the third, 
Drod ced bv O.y. Fennica A.B. A new law effective January 15, 
1933 wl erelv theaters showing 200 meters or more of local film are 
allowed 5 percent reduction in theater tax caused a considerable in- 
c ea e n Thort production. About 60 of these were produced by 
Aho Soldan & Co. and a smaller number by Siiomi Films. Prob- 
ablv'two or three features will be produced in 1933 (A complete 
list"' of short subjects produced in 1932 is on file m the Motion Pic- 
ture Division of the Bureau at Washington.) 

Distnhution.—khowi 546 films were censored. Of these, 390 
(404 200 meters) were American, 83 (139,035 meters) were German, 
31 (17 475 meters) were Finnish, 21 (34,580 meters) were Swedish, 
8 (14,310 meters) were French, 3 (6,540 meters) were Danish, and 
the rest came from Estonia, Italy, Russia, and Poland. American 
films were mostly originals with Finnish or Swedish subtitles or 
were dubbed into German. Competition from Germany and Swe- 
den is increasing, but American prestige held up well. The dubbed 
films were fairly popular. . n ■ , 

Exhihition— 'No theaters were built or reconstructed during the 
year. Twenty-two were wired in 1932. making a total of 120 wired 
theaters out of 221 at the close of the year, 8 having disk equipment 
only. German, Swedish, and local equipment is mostly used. 

Legislation. — Aside from the law mentioned above there was no 
special legislation affecting American films passed during the year. 

General. — Theater attendance declined nearly 50 percent during 
the year because of decreased purchasing power and high admission 
charges. The outlook for 1933 is not bright, and theater owners 
only hope that attendance will not decrease further. 

FRANCE 

By Assistant Trade Commissioner Earle C. Taylor, Paris 

Production. — It should be noted in advance that no reliable sta- 
tistics are available covering French film production. The follow- 
ing production figures, however, are based on the most commonly 
accepted estimates, these being the tabulations of the various trade 
organizations and publications. 

The year 1932 established a record for French motion-picture 
production. One hundred and forty French feature films were 
turned out in France proper and 17 other French-talking films in 
the studios of Vienna and Budapest by French firms, which are not 
to be included as French productions. This figure represents the 
number of films censored at the end of December. The actual pro- 
duction of feature films, however, is reported as having been 176 
pictures, of which only those mentioned above have been presented 
to the censor Other sources report the local production as being 
considerably less than either of these figures. To these feature films 
(over l,o00 meters) must be added 33 French short films of between 



15 



950 and 1,500 meters and 60 educational and other short films of less 
than 900 meters. 

The principal producers of French films were an American com- 
pany with 24 films produced at Joinville (2 each month), Pathc- 
Natan 14, Osso 10, and G.F.F.A. 9 feature films. 

It has been found impossible to secure any very accurate informa- 
tion on the dubbing situation. However, it is believed that G6 films 
were dubbed during the year. Of these, 43 w^ere American films, 
the dubbing being done by 11 different companies; 16 were German 
with 9 companies doing the dubbing, the rest being films dubbed 
from Italian and English, 

The principal reason for the uncertainty as to the exact number 
of films dubbed is due to the fact that a number of films which were 
censored during the later part of 1931 and the early months of 1932 
were dubbed without being obliged to request a new censor's visa. 

Present indications are that the dubbings during 1933 will be 
much more important in number. It is reported that Jacques Haik 
alone will present more than 20 dubbed American films. 

The production plans for the local industry for 1933 are an- 
nounced as embracing the production of more than 150 features. It 
is felt probable, however, that the actual production may fall con- 
siderably short of present plans. It is planned to dub a much larger 
number of films than were dubbed during 1932. 

There are about 26 studios of all sorts in France, including those 
for photography, sound, and dubbing. All but 1 studio in Nice, 2 
in Marseille, and 1 at Nancy are either in Paris or the Paris suburbs. 
(A complete list of these may be secured on loan from the Motion 
Picture Division at Washington.) 

Distribution. — During 1932 France imported 339 features. Of 
these, 208 were American, 99 German, 7 British, 6 Russian, 4 each 
Italian, Belgian, and Polish, 2 Czechoslovak, 1 each Spanish and 
Austrian, and 3 from various other countries. It should be noted 
that the United States share of the market dropped to 208 films 
from 220 in 1931, while Germany's share increased from 60 in 1931 to 
99 in 1932, 

A number of American-made films with French subtitles were 
released during the year. 

There was a change from opposition to this type of film to gen- 
eral acceptance in Paris and a growing popularity in the Provinces. 
However, the limitation to 10 theaters (5 in Paris and 5 in the 
Provinces) has prevented normal development of this particular 
kind of business. 

An increasing number of dubbed films appeared in the market-— 
it is estimated 66 in all. Of this total it is estimated that approxi- 
mately 37 were of American origin. 

There has been a sharp drop in the release of originals using for- 
eign casts. The American and English companies are said to have 
stopped this type of production entirely, although Germany (prin- 
cipally Ufa) continues, this company producing regularly 12 films 
per year in French. Some French producers (for example, Osso) 
are making French-cast pictures abroad, principally because they 
find capital and facilities there. 

The demand for American dubbed films is a constantly growing 
one. French is the only language which can be used for dubbing 

175174 — 33- 3 



16 



films in this territory. French exhibitors have contin.ually de- 
m mdec d ibb^ tihns throughout the year and to this end inter- 
vened with the Min^ of Fine Arts at the tune the films regula- 
tions were being discussed and drawn up. 

XS..-In 1932 about 78 theatei. were either built, re- 
constructed, or being built in France and North Africa, fhirty- 
one of these were in Paris with a seating capacity of approximately 
22,000; 6 were in Bordeaux, 2 m Metz, 4 in Lyons, 3 each in Nice 
and Marseille, 2 in Nancy, 3 in North Africa, 2 in Algiers, and 1 
in Tunis These were all sound theaters. (A complete list of them 
may be secured on loan from the Motion Picture Division at 

Washington.) . , , ^ ^.^^ . • , 

As of December 31, 1932, approximately 2,0^7 theaters were wired 
out of a total of 2,500, those remaining unwired being mostly very 
small and rapidly dropping out of existence. No less than 30 types 
of sound equipment are in use, of which American devices are found 
in about 500 theaters. Particularly popular makes of local equip- 
ment include Etoile, found in 248 houses; Nalpas, found in 244; 
Resonal, used in 132 ; and Ideal Sonore, used in 97 houses. 

Legislation. — ^Regarding legislation affecting the interests of 
American films, the French Government on July 29, 1932, issued a 
regulation, which, while not actually limiting by quota the importa- 
tion of American films, affects drastically the American film busi- 
ness in France, inasmuch as the French Government, in the decree, 
reserved the right at any moment up to June 30, 1933, and without 
previous notification to stop the importation of American films. 

The decree of July 29 introduced three particular principles 
which will affect the sale of American films in France. First, it 
I)rovided that original dialog films imported from abroad may only 
be shown in 10 cinemas, 5 in Paris and 5 in the provinces; second, 
that the Government will reserve the right to limit from day to day 
the release of American films dubbed in French; and, third, the 
adaptation known as dubbing of American films into French must 
be done in France. 

GeneTal. — The film situation during 1932 was much the same as 
during 1931, except that an increasing number of French-made 
films appeared on the local market. This increase added to the diffi- 
culties of the American distributors in securing playing dates for 
American films. 

In 1931 American companies were able to release synchronized 
and scored versions of American films. In 1932, however, these 
versions became practically unsalable, as exhibitors demanded dialog 
films. 

The prestige of American films has held up well, although in 
general the American companies have felt the decline in business. 
Admission prices are generally lower. 

GERMANY 

By Trade Coimnissioner George B. Canty, Berlin 

Production.~T\\.^ total German production of feature films dur- 
ing 1932 IS not known exactly, for the reason that no records are 
available concerning foreign-language versions produced in Ger- 



17 



many tor export. Actually, 127 German-language features (no 
silent features) were turned out, as well as an estimated 18 foreign- 
language versions (mostly in French) or an estimated total of 145. 

As production records during the past few years have been cal- 
culated on the basis of features censored for domestic consumption 
(plus foreign versions made, if any), it is thought best, for record 
purposes at least to continue this practice for 1932. On this basis 
German feature-film production ran as follows during the past 5 
years: 1928, 221 films; 1929, 192 films; 1930, 151 films; 1931, 146 
films; 1932, 145 films. 

Inasmuch as the existing German contingent regulations (from 
July 1, 1932, to June 30, 1933) require that dubbed films submitted 
for censorship must be finished in Germany, it is assumed that the 
major part of " dubbed production " occurred during the second 
half of 1932. Available estimates indicate that 18 foreign films 
were dubbed in Germany during 1932, of which 14 were of Ameri- 
can origin, 2 Danish, and 1 each of French and Polish origin. 

It is estimated that approximately $9,191,000 was spent on pro- 
duction during the year, as compared with $9,850,000 during 1931, 
and $12,500,000 during 1930. It is, of course, quite impossible to 
estimate this sum accurately but only to strike an average on differ- 
ent types of production as follows : 

Total coat 

127 German talkies (average cost, $65,000) $8,255,000 

18 foreign-language versions (average cost, $40,000) 720,000 

]8 dubbed versions (average cost, $12;,000) 216,000 



Total 9, 191, 000 

Of the 127 German talkies actually produced during 1932, Ufa pro- 
duced 18, T. K. Tonfilm and Aafa 5 each, Froehlich and Elite 4 each, 
while 9 companies produced 3 each, 12 companies produced 2 each, 
and 40 companies produced 1 each. (A list of these companies is on 
file in the motion-picture division and can be secured on loan.) The 
127 features in question were distributed as follows : 



Number and 
meter length 

Ufa 20 (29,349) 

American 11 (27,298) 

Aafa 11 (26,266) 

Bayerische 10 ( 24,182) 

Heros 5 (12,123) 

Terra 5 (11,316) 

D.L.S 5 (10,888) 

Sudfllm (later Europa)- 4 (10,257) 

Messtro 4 (9, 786) 

Siegel 4 (9,224) 

Albo 4 ( 9,204) 



Number and 
meter length 

Paramount 4 ( 8,904) 

Markische 3 (7, 410) 

Erich Engels 3 (6,875) 

Europa 3 (6,780) 

Fellner & Sonilo 1 (2,778) 

Kristall-Film 1 (2. 559) 

American Company 1 (2,518) 

Deutsche Eidophon 1 (2,357) 

Vereinigte Starfllm 1 (2,187) 

Marchenfilm 1 (1,682) 

District distributors 25 (66,066) 



Except for the addition of some portable trucks and dubbing 
equipment, the German studios were not expanded during the year, 
so that 13 studios with 32 stages, as reported a year ago, still stand 
as the German producing capacity. 

The studios, together with details of their equipment, are listed 
below : 

Universum Film A.G. (Ufa) Berlin-Neubabelsberg : 9 recording stages; 5 
recorders, type " C " ; 2 dubbing installations ; 2 location trucks, type " Klang- 
film a-RP " ; 2 trunk recorders, type " Klangfilm E-K-8." 



16 



CI • fi,^ fprriforv French exhibitors have contin^uallv de- 
S^^uS,eftiln"'throughout the year and to this end inter- 
vened with the Ministry of Fine Arts at the time the fihns regula- 
tions wore bein"- discussed and drawn up. 

"""^^i:^ 1932 about 78 theaters were either built, re- 
constructed, or being built in France and North Africa. Thirty- 
one of these were in Paris with a seating capacity of approximately 
22,000: 6 were in Bordeaux, 2 m Mete, 4 in Lyons, 3 each in Nice 
and Marseille, 2 in Nancy, 3 in North Africa, 2 in Algiers, and 1 
in Tunis These were all sound theaters. (A complete list of them 
may be secured on loan from the Motion Picture Division at 

Washington.) . , , ^ ^t^t ^i, • , 

As of December 31, 1932, approximately 2,0(7 theaters were wired 
out of a total of 2,500, those remaining unwired being mostly very 
small and rapidly dropping out of existence. No less than 30 types 
of sound equipment are in use, of which American devices are found 
in about 500 theaters. Particularly popular makes of local equip- 
ment include Etoile, found in 248 houses; Nalpas, found in 244; 
Resonal, used in 132; and Ideal Sonore, used in 97 houses. 

Legislation. — Regarding legislation aifecting the interests of 
American films, the French Government on July 29, 1932, issued a 
regulation, which, while not actually limiting by quota the importa- 
tion of American films, affects drastically the American film busi- 
ness in France, inasmuch as the French Government, in the decree, 
reserved the right at any moment up to June 30, 1933, and without 
previous notification to stop the importation of American films. 

The decree of July 29 introduced three particular principles 
which will affect the sale of American films in France. First, it 
provided that original dialog films imported from abroad may only 
be shown in 10 cinemas, 5 in Paris and 5 in the provinces; second, 
that the Government will reserve the right to limit from day to day 
the release of American films dubbed in French; and, third, the 
adaptation known as dubbing of American films into French must 
be done in France. 

General. — The film situation during 1932 was much the same as 
during 1931, except that an increasing number of French-made 
films appeared on the local market. This increase added to the diffi- 
culties of the American distributors in securing playing dates for 
American films. 

In 1931 American companies were able to release synchronized 
and scored versions of American films. In 1932, however, these 
versions became practically unsalable, as exhibitors demanded dialog 
films. 

The prestige of American films has held up well, although in 
general the American companies have felt the decline in business. 
Admission prices are generally lower. 

GERMANY 

By Trade Commissioner George R. Canty, Berlin 

Production.— total Gennan production of feature films dur- 
ing 1932 IS not known exactly, for the reason that no records are 
available concerning foreign-language versions produced in Ger- 



17 



many tor export. Actually, 127 German-language features (no 
silent features) were turned out, as well as an estimated 18 foreign- 
language versions (mostly in French) or an estimated total of 145. 

As production records during the past few years have been cal- 
culated on the basis of features censored for domestic consumption 
(plus foreign versions made, if any), it is thought best, for record 
purposes at least to continue this practice for 1932. On this basis 
German feature-film production ran as folloAvs during the past 5 
years: 1928, 221 films; 1929, 192 films; 1930, 151 films; 1931, 146 
films; 1932, 145 films. 

Inasmuch as the existing German contingent regulations (from 
July 1, 1932, to June 30, 1933) require that dubbed films submitted 
for censorship must be finished in Germany, it is assumed that the 
major part of " dubbed production " occurred during the second 
half of 1932. Available estimates indicate that 18 foreign films 
were dubbed in Germany during 1932, of which 14 were of Ameri- 
can origin, 2 Danish, and 1 each of French and Polish origin. 

It is estimated that approximately $9,191,000 was spent on pro- 
duction during the year, as compared with $9,850,000 during 1931, 
and $12,500,000 during 1930. It is, of course, quite impossible to 
estimate this sum accurately but only to strike an average on differ- 
ent types of production as follows : 

Total cost 

127 German talkies (average cost, $65,000) $8,255,000 

18 foreign-language versions (average cost, $40,000) 720,000 

18 dubbed versions (average cost, $12,000) 216,000 



Total 9, 191, 000 

Of the 127 German talkies actually produced during 1932, Ufa pro- 
duced 18, T. K. Tonfilm and Aaf a 5 each, Froehlich and Elite 4 each, 
while 9 companies produced 3 each, 12 companies produced 2 each, 
and 40 companies produced 1 each. (A list of these companies is on 
file in the motion-picture division and can be secured on loan.) The 
127 features in question were distributed as follows : 



Number and 
meter length 

Ufa 20 ( 29,349) 

American 11 (27,298) 

Aaf a 11 (26,266) 

Bayerische 10 (24,182) 

Heros 5 (12,123) 

Terra 5 (11,316) 

D.L.S 5 (10,888) 

Sudfilm (later Eur opa)_- 4 (10,257) 

Messtro 4 (9,786) 

Siegel 4 ( 9,224) 

Albo 4 ( 9,204) 



Number and 
meter length 

Paramount 4 (8,904) 

Markische 3 (7,410) 

Erich Engels 3 (6,875) 

Europa 3 (6,780) 

Fellner & Somlo 1 (2,778) 

Kristall-Film 1 (2,559) 

American Company 1 (2,518) 

Deutsche Eidophon 1 (2,357) 

Vereinigte Starfllm 1 (2,187) 

Marchenfilm 1 (1,682) 

District distributors 25 ( 66,066) 



Except for the addition of some portable trucks and dubbing 
equipment, the German studios were not expanded during the year, 
so that 13 studios with 32 stages, as reported a year ago, still stand 
as the German producing capacity. 

The studios, together with details of their equipment, are listed 
below : 

Universum Film A.G. (Ufa) Berlin-Nenbabelsberg : 9 recording stages; 5 
recorders, type "C"; 2 dubbing installations; 2 location trucks, type " Klang- 
film a-RP " ; 2 trunk recorders, type " Klangfilm E-K-8." 



18 



type 



re- 



Tofn «;tu(li()s Berlin Johannistlial : 10 recording stases; 3 recorders, tj 
"A- 4 d .in- Uistallations: 1 location truck, type '• Klangfilm a Rp.'- 
\uicU:^UciSS^^t A.G. (Emelka) Munich-Geiselgasteig : 3 recordi 
of.,ooc- 9 rpcorders type "A"; 1 dubbing installation. , . , ^, 

''^^.S:^^^^i^'S^^'l^^^ stage; 1 

rcc^Sifty^ "iSangm (portable); 1 dubbmg installation; 1 trunk 

recorder, type " Klaugfilm E-K-8." 

In addition to the above, the four following-named studios are 
wired for recording equipment which is temporarily hooked up dur- 
m<r sound shooting: Ufa studios, Berlin Tempelhot; btaaken studios, 
on"* the outskirts of Berlin; Efa studio, Berlin; Crrunewald studios, 

Berlin. -, • • i • 

Distribution— Feature-hlm distribution in (jermany during the 

calendar year 1932 declined by 72 films, or 25 percent, as compared 
with tlie" preceding year, comparative figures being 285 and 213, 
The loss was absorbed by both foreign products, which dropped 
from 140 to 86, a decline of 54 films, or 38.5 percent, and domestic 
features, which, with comparative totals of 145 and 127, showed a 
loss of 18 films or 12.4 percent. (Figures showing feature-film 
distribution by companies for the years 1932 and 1931 may be se- 
cured on loan from the Motion Picture Division at Washington.) 

Of the total number of films distributed in 1931, 20 or more fea- 
tures each were handled by 3 distributors, in 1932 by 2 distributors ; 
in 1931 from 15 to 20 features each were handled l3y 1 distributor 
and in 1932 by 2 distributors; in both 1931 and 1932 from 10 to 15 
features each were handled by 3 distributors; in 1931 from 5 to 10 
features each were handled by 9 distributors and in 1932 by 6 dis- 
tributors; in 1931. 4 features each were handled by 2 distributors 
and in 1932 by 3 distributors ; in 1931, 3 features each were handled 
by 6 distributors and in 1932 by 2 distributors; in 1931, 2 features 
each were handled by 9 distributors and in 1932 by 3 distributors; 
in 1931, 1 feature was handled by 24 distributors and in 1932 by 15 
distributors. 

The leading distributors of German features during the past 2 
years were as follows : 



Distributor 


Films in 
1931 


Films in 
1932 


Distributor 


Films in 
1931 


Films in 
1932 


Ufa 

Universal 


19 

5 
8 


21 
11 
10 


Bayerische . 
Terra ' 


10 
5 
1 


9 
5 
5 


Aafa 


Siegel-Monopol. _ 



' Now in liquidation. 

Exhibition— The economic crisis for the second year kept Ger- 
many s theater additions at a low point, and in 1932 only 29 new 
houses seating about 14,200, were added. These figures compare 
wSi ; OQ^nn fn*^ ^^'^^^ ^^^ts in 1930 and 25 new theaters 

acttl ' information is available as to the 

vetv Lf ! ^^fference in the total number of theaters during the 
L m seTintn f T'^^'f^ ^ept of the number of houses 
that passed into liquidation during the year or closed their doors 



19 



for other reasons. It is felt, however, that the number closing their 
doors by far offset the new additions. It will be seen that of the 
29 new theaters, 1 seats more than 2,500, 4 seat from 750 to 1,000, 
4 seat from 500 to 750, 13 seat from 300 to 500, and 7 seat less than 
300. (A complete list of the new theaters with seating capacity and 
other details may be secured on loan from the Motion Picture Divi- 
sion at Washington.) 

At the end of 1932 there were 5,100 theaters with about 1,990,000 
seats in Germany, including the Saar and Memel districts and 
Danzig. Compared with previous years, this means a further de- 
crease of motion-picture houses and a further increase of seats. In 
other words, the tendency for concentration in the Germany film 
industry and the tendency for a greater capacity has continued. 
While, for instance, in 1924, 59.7 percent of all theaters contained 
up to 300 seats and 1.8 percent of the theaters had more than 1,000 
seats, the figures for 1932 are 53.2 and 3.6 percent, respectively — a 
rather significant change. 

On the other hand, a further increase in the number of seats, com- 
bined with a reduced number of visitors and reduced receipts along 
with increasing overhead expenses, will result in declining profits 
and a real struggle for existence. These facts are resulting in 
smaller entrance fees, free distribution of programs, bankruptcies, 
financial difficulties, and so on. The German film houses are over- 
seated, even considering the fact that during recent years they have 
only grown in proportion to the population. The reduced purchas- 
ing power of the population has been a decisive factor also. (De- 
tailed figures showing the development of German theaters on the 
basis of seating capacity during the past 14 years may be secured 
on loan from the Motion Picture Division.) 

About 70 percent of the German theaters are now wired for 
sound. It is estimated in reliable trade circles that 3,600 theaters 
were wired for the reproduction of sound at the end of 1932, which 
would indicate that approximately 1,000 houses were wired during 
the year under review. Tobis and Tobis-Klangfilm and Kinoton 
equipment together exceed all other installations. 

In round figures, it is estimated that from 1,400 to 1,500 theaters 
.still remain unwired. It is calculated that 400 or 500 of these will 
be wired this year or at least before the end of the next film season 
in June 1933, and that this represents fairly accurately the satura- 
tion point. Trade leaders feel that 1,000 of the existing theaters 
will never be able to support sound equipment and that unless con- 
verted into more adequate houses they will, in the natural course 
of events, be obliged to close their doors. 

General. — The German film industry experienced a very trying 
year, although it bore up fairly well in comparison with other 
trades under the continued depression. Ufa, the leading film or- 
ganization on the Continent, reported a profitable year, paying a 
4 percent dividend as against 6 percent last year, while Aafa, oper- 
ating on a considerably smaller capital, declared an 8 percent divi- 
dend as compared with 10 percent for the previous year. Such 
old-time leading companies as the Emelka, Sudfilm, Deutsches 
Lichtspiel Syndikat (D.L.S.), Messtro-Film Verleih. G.m.b.H., Terra, 



20 



Nationalfilm A.G., and Heros. as well as some others of lesser 
importajice, went out of biisinet^s for one reason or another during 
the year. Etforts are under way in a few of these cases to carry 
on under new arrangements in order to salvage as much revenue as 
iiossible for stockholders. . ^. , 

Film output held up remarkably well quantitatively, despite 
limited credit, but quahty production was below the German average 
and resulted, along with lowered purchasing power of the public, 
in continued decreased theater receipts. New theaters were built 
v/here necessary to cope with sound-film conditions, while the amaz- 
ing progress registered in wiring houses revealed a strong tendency 
tolbuild for future business. Foreign revenues subsided on account 
of exchange restrictions in hitherto strong markets for German 
films, which placed producere at a considerable disadvantage and 
resulted in still more stringent credit. The inadequate small theater 
continued to disappear, although no records are available to esti- 
mate its relative importance. 

German companies report a strong demand for talkies in German 
in the three Scandinavian countries, Finland, the three Baltic 
States, Netherlands, Switzerland, Austria, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, 
and the Balkans, although, of course, exchange controls and cur- 
rency depreciation in these markets seriously interfered with finan- 
cial returns. French-language versions made in Germany continued 
to enjoy most satisfactory yields in French-speaking countries, espe- 
cially France and Belgium. 

Contingent problems in Czechoslovakia developed during the year 
and caused considerable political and financial embarrassment to 
Germany. German talkies are still forbidden to be shown in Poland. 

Export markets have a great bearing on the success of the German 
film industry, and every effort, official and otherwise, seems to be 
made to encourage this form of business. 

Import difficulties encountered by American firms in operating 
under the German contingent, together with a shortage of films 
incident to the language barrier, kept American business down, but 
results in this connection during 1932 were unquestionably superior 
to those of the previous year. This improved business was very 
likely due in part to lack of spirited competition from the German 
films. 

It was difficult to measure demand with any degree of accuracy. 
For example, American dubbed films did fair "business, but whether 
this would have been so with a better supply of domestic talkies 
on the market is conjecture. It seems to be the opinion of many 
trade leaders that dubbed films have but little demand in Germany 
at best, especially in view of the expense involved in meeting the 
contingent requirements for their distribution. A change in the 
future make-up of films to more action and less dialog would un- 
questionably increase the demand for dubbed products just as it 
would the demand for English talkies with superimposed titles in 
German, with decision left to local exchange managers as to which 
of the two would be preferable. 

American films, particularly of the super class, with attractive 
artist names and with stories that are at least understandable and 
not too complicated, are meeting with a growing yet limited de- 



21 



mand. The really big films that include so-called " international 
artists " enjoying local popularity seem to meet with continued 
success. 

GREECE 

By Assistant Commercial Attache Ralph B. Curren, Athens 

Production. — Three films were produced, " The Lover of the 
Shepherd Girl", "Greek Khapsody ", and "Such is Life." The 
dialog and music for these were put on at a French studio, as Greece 
has no sound studios. Olympia Film, Didritz Film, and Hellenic 
Cinema Co., produced the silent portions of these. 

Distribution. — During the 1931-32 season 225 features were 
shown — 133 American, 42 French, 33 German, 7 British, 4 Italian, 
3 Greek, 2 Turkish, and 1 Russian. In addition 30 silents were 
shown, nearly all from the United States. A considerable portion 
of the American films were versions dubbed into French and were 
received favorably, though these will become less popular as better 
original French and German films appear. German musical 
operetta is becoming more and more popular. 

Exhihltion. — Two new theaters were constructed, one the Pallas 
(seating capacity 2,200) being the largest and best equipped theater 
in Greece, with all modern conveniences. The other, the Iris (seat- 
ing capacity 500), is a small second-run house. Both are in Athens. 
The Mondial, a former vaudeville house in Athens, has been turned 
into a film theater. Thirty-six theaters were wired in 1932, 27 for 
film and disk and^9 for disk only. Only one of these has American 
equipment. Thus, as of December 31, 1932, out of 125 theaters in 
Greece, 93 are wired, 73 with sound on film and 20 with sound on 
disk. Of these about 58 have locally assembled equipment and 13 
have American equipment. 

Legislation.— K quota system on film imports was established 
in May 1932, the quota for the coming year being a cut of about 
45 percent under previous imports. Only established importers who 
have handled films for their own account between 1929 and 1931 
are entitled to a share in the quota, which is designed to check the 
outflow of foreign exchange. Import duties were also increased by 
two thirds, but the entertainment tax was lowered by 50 percent. 

General.— T\iQ last theatrical season showed no improvement over 
the previous one and most theater owners showed only a very narrow 
margin of profit. 

HUNGARY 

By Commercial Attache Frederick B. Lyon, Budapest 

Production.— 'Eight sound features were produced at the Hunnia 
Studio in Budapest. There were: " Czokolj Meg Edes" (Kiss Me, 
Dear) produced by Pless Film (length 2,771 meters, cost about 
70 000 pengos) : "Piri Mindent Tud" (Piri Knows Everything), 
Phoebus Film (length 2,100 meters, cost about 130,000 pengos) ; 
"Lelkek a Viharban" (Souls in Storm), produced by Imre de 
Nadosy (length 2,500 meters, cost unknown) ; The OULtoo^. 
produced by Ufa Film Berlin with a German version (length 2 800 
meters, cost about 700,000 ])engos). Four films were produced by 



22 



Osso, a Fieiich firm, at a total cost of about 2,000,000 pengos. These 
were " Un Fils d'Amerique " (2,300 meters) in French; "Spring 
Shower" (2,100 meters) in Hungarian, French, and English; 
" Rouletabille Aviateur " (2,000 meters) in French and Hungarian; 
and "Le Roi des Palaces" (2,300 meters) in French. In addition, 
the Hungarian Government Film Bureau produced 4 sound shorts, 
31 industrial, and 9 educational sound and silent shorts. This 
agency and the Hunnia are the only sound studios in Hungary. 
In 1932 the Hunnia studio nearly doubled its space through a loan 
of 200,000 pengos by the Osso Co., representing studio rentals paid 
in advance. It has now 2 working stages and the Hungarian 
Film Bureau 1. This company will probably produce about 8 
features at the Hunnia in 1933, these to be in French with Hun- 
garian versions for 4 of them. The usual shorts and educationals 
will also be produced. 

Distribution. — During 1932, 797 films (811,195 meters) were re- 
leased, of which 666 (713,562 meters) were sound. Of these, 298 
sound (307,579 meters) and 24 silent came from the United States ; 
211 sound (308,581 meters) and 13 silent from Germany; 18 sound 
(38,988 meters) and 42 silent from France; 126 sound (42,067 
meters) and 42 silent from Hungary; and the rest from other coun- 
tries. Based on sound films and a footage basis, pictures from the 
United States commanded 43.2 percent of the market, those from 
Germany 43.4 percent, those from Hungary 5.9 percent, and those 
from France 5.4 percent. 

The majority of the American films were in English with super- 
imposed titles and were successful in inverse proportion to the 
amount of dialog they contained. A large number of dubbed films 
in German were also released, and the betters ones, including an 
American film, were very successful. 

Exhibition. — Three new picture houses were built : City Films- 
zinhaz (467 seats) and Hunnia Filmszinhaz (370 seats) in Buda- 
pest, and Jokai Mozgokepszinhaz (336 seats) in Papa. During 
1932, 52 houses were wired, making a total as of December 31, 1932, 
of 250 wired houses, of which 229 had sound on film and disk and 
21 sound on disk only. Nearly all the equipments are either Ger- 
man or locally assembled. There are 436 registered theaters in 
Hungary, of which about 135 are auditoriums, exihibition halls, 
and the like. 

Legislation.— major legislative action affecting the Hungarian 
film trade was enacted in 1932. Slight changes, however, were 
made in the price of import certificates and film-fund fees, the 
latter in order to give support to the film laboratories in Hungary 
engaged in making Hungarian titles for foreign films. Special 
note should also be taken of the rigorous foreign exchange restric- 
tions, which rendered payments in foreign moneys for imported 
films almost impossible. 

Outstanding facts of the year were the larger local 
production, the greater part of which was for foreign, particularly 
French account; the considerable falling off in box-office receipts 
due to the economic crisis; and the continued American film prestige 
in the face of adverse factors. 



23 



ITALY 

Office of Commercial Attache, Rome 

Production.— Twenty-one sound films were produced in 1932, 19 in 
Italian with 2 French versions. Thirteen and the two French ver- 
sions were produced by Cines-Pittaluga, 5 by Caesar Films, and 1 
by Titanus Films. In addition, 62 Italian shorts were produced. 
No new studios were erected or enlarged and no studio expansion 
is contemplated for 1933. (The Motion Picture Division at Wash- 
ington has on file the names and other information relating to the 
features mentioned. These will be loaned to inquirers on application. 

Distribution— During 1932, 231 features were shown, including 
103 talking, 109 sound, and 17 silent. Of these the United States 
contributed 125 (52 talking, 68 sound, and 5 silent) ; Germany 43 
(21 each talking and sound and 1 silent). Of the features shown, 
83 were dubbed, 55 in Italy (American 27, German 18, French 7, 
others 3) and 28 abroad (American 25, German 3). In general, 
Italian films have displaced American as the most popular, the 
most successful ones having surpassed records held up to now by 
the best American pictures. 

Exhibition. — No new theaters were constructed, but 8 were recon- 
structed, adding 9,550 seats. Among these were included the Adri- 
ano in Rome (2,500 seats), the Genovese in Genoa (2,000 seats), the 
Verdi in Milan (1,800 seats) and the Ambrioso in Turin (1,600 
seats). Four hundred and twenty-nine theaters were wired dur- 
ing 1932, 116 for film and disk, 305 for film alone, and 8 for disk 
alone. Three hundred and fifty-five of the equipments were of 
Italian make, 52 German, 12 British, 6 American, and 4 French. 
There are about 4,000 theaters in Italy, which includes any building 
which is capable of use as a projection hall for even a small audi- 
ence. As of December 31, 1932, 949 of these were wired, 711 with 
Italian equipment, 101 with American, 99 with German, 20 with 
British, 14 with French, and 2 each with Austrian and Dutch. 

Legislation. — No new legislation affecting American films is in 
immediate prospect. A law has been considered limiting dubbing to 
producing companies, which would force the dubbing of American 
films in Italy, but it has not yet received serious consideration. 

General. — Motion-picture receipts fell off about 50 percent from 
the preceding year, particularly in the key towns from which the 
bulk of the revenues are derived. American films have fallen off, 
and now only those of the very highest rank have much possibility 
of success in Italy. The swing in favor of Italian films is particu- 
larly noticeable. 

LATVIA 

By Commercial Attache Lee C. Morse, Riga 

Production. — No sound films were produced in Latvia. Of silents 
53 news reels, 5 educationals, and 12 advertising films were made. 
One educational film was made on a large scale with the cooperation 
of the Army. 

Distribution. — There were 645 films censored in Latvia in 1932. 
Of these, 302 (339,131 meters) came from the United States, 218 



24 



(358,968 meters) from (iermany, 70 (15,597 meters) were domestic, 
20 (25,804 metere) from Russia, 13 (15,722 meters) from France, 
and the rest from England, Austria, Denmark, etc. Based on the 
length in meters, German films commanded 45.1 percent of the mar- 
ket as against 42.6 percent for American films. Four hundred and 
ninety-three were sound films and 152 silent; of the former, 274 
(164 'in English, 95 in German, 8 in French, 2 in Russian, and 4 
others) came from the United States and 187 from Germany (186 
in German and 1 in Russian). The prestige of American films was 
high, particularly for those pictures where music and songs pre- 
dominated; but American originals in German were preferred to 
dubbed films or English with Lettish subtitles. (Detailed figures as 

to types of films distributed, etc., are available in the Motion Picture 

Division at Washington.) 

Exhibition. — Two new theaters were built, the Lido and Odeon 

Palace (each 350 seats) in Riga. Six theaters were also reopened. 

During the year 14 theaters were wired, making, as of December 

31, 1932, a total of 47 theaters wired out of 88 in the country. In 

Riga 25 out of 34 theaters are wired. Locally assembled or German 

equipment predominates. 

Legislation. — Attempts were made to pass a law establishing a film 

monopoly by which all imported films would have to be passed by a 

government distributing agency. This was defeated, however. 
General. — Attendance at theaters decreased considerably, owing 

to the economic conditions. 

LITHUANIA 

Office of the American Consul, Kaunas 

Production. — There is no production of feature films and no 
studios. Small firms exist for the purpose of preparing subtitles 
and for developing films. One of these has produced a number 
of shorts (total length about 18,000 meters) showing scenes of 
Lithutmian life. There are also several cameramen who specialize 
in taking scenes of current events. 

Distribution. — About 486 films were censored for -release in 1932 as 
against 413 in 1931. Approximately 25 percent of these were from 
the United States, the others being nearly all German. Practically 
all were sound films. 

Exhibition. — Two new theaters were opened during the year and 
12 were closed. The 2 new theaters were the Lyra located at Plunge 
and the Dziugas located at Telsiai. This makes a total of 67 
theaters m Lithuania, exclusive of Memel which has two theaters. 
Seventeen theaters were wired during the year, all with sound on 
film, making a total of 42 wired as of December 31, 1932. Twenty- 
two have sound on both disk and film, 12 sound on film alone, and 
8 sound on disk alone. 

Legislation.— K new censorship law in effect September 1, 1932, 
requires all titles and subtitles in Lithuanian and that a small pro- 
portion of films of Lithuanian life be shown at each performance. 

C^eweraZ.— Business decreased considerably during the last half 
of 1932, owing to increasing financial difficulties among the 



25 



Lithuanian people and to an increase of 15 percent in the price of 
1Q1o^ of the establishment of an amusement-tax law (Aug. 

1, 19d2). The outlook for 1933 is not promising. 

NETHERLANDS 

By Commercial Attache Jesse F. Van Wickel, The Ha^e 

1 ^r^^'^f^o^-—The Barnstyn studio is the only one in the Nether- 
lands. It has one stage, a single film recorder, and two location 
trucks. In 1932 it produced six shorts in the Dutch language of 
an estimated length of 10,000 feet. It also turned out 104 newsreels 
and about 10 educationals all in sound. There is no prospect of 
expansion of production activity during 1933. 

Distribution.— A total of 337 sound features were submitted for 
censoring in 1932. There were also 50 silent features, 947 sound 
shorts, and 543 silent shorts. Of this number, 155 sound features 
and 14 silent came from the United States, 153 sound and 18 silent 
from Germany, 11 sound and 3 silent from France, 9 sound and 2 
silent from England, and the rest from other countries. 

As for the short subjects, 496 sound and 76 silent came from the 
United States, 214 sound and 83 silent from Germany, and 145 
sound and 332 silent from the Netherlands. The United States 
contributed 46 percent of the number of sound features shown, as 
against 45.4 percent from Germany, and 52.4 percent of the sound 
shorts as against 22.6 percent and 15.3 percent from Germany and 
the Netherlands, respectively. 

American films were about 90 percent in English with Dutch 
subtitles, 7 percent dubbed, and 3 percent originals. American 
prestige was maintained, owing to the showing of films with more 
action and less dialog. Trade opinion regards films with Dutch sub- 
titles as better suited than dubbed films. Since German is fairly 
well understood, German versions of several American films were 
shown. 

Exhibition. — Four new theaters were built. These were the Royal 
(700 seats) at Eoermond, the Cinema Palace (800 seats) at Hoens- 
broek, Schouwberg (500 seats) at Zutphen, and Studio 1932 (300 
seats) at Rotterdam. The first two and the last have film and disk, 
the third film only. The Roxy, in The Hague, and New Central, 
in Helrpond, each added 100 seats. Many houses were redecorated 
and otherwise improved to meet the demand for better theaters. A 
few theaters in small towns closed. Eighteen theaters were wired 
in 1932, 9 for film and disk, 7 for film, and 2 for disk only. This 
makes a total of 233 theaters wired out of 253. 

Legislation. — There has been no legislation which specifically af- 
fects American films adversely. 

General. — As a result of the continuance of economic difficulties, 
theater attendance recorded a substantial decrease which could not 
be overcome even with reduced admission prices. Distributors in 
most cases had to be satisfied with smaller rentals, and there was 
a more restricted demand for films, especially expensive features. 
Yet it was these that drew the largest attendance. 



24 



(358,968 meters) from Germany, 70 (15,597 meters) were domestic, 
20 (L>5,804 metei-s) from Russia, 13 (15,722 meters) from France, 
and the rest from England, Austria, Denmark, etc. Based on the 
length in meters, German films connnanded 45.1 percent of the mar- 
ket as against 42.6 percent for American films. Four hundred and 
ninetv-three were sound films and 152 silent; of the former, 274 
(164 'in English, 95 in German, 8 in French, 2 in Russian, and 4 
others) came from the United States and 187 from Germany (186 
in German and 1 in Russian). The prestige of American films was 
high, particularly for those pictures where music and songs pre- 
dominated; but American originals in German were preferred to 
dubbed films or English with Lettish subtitles. (Detailed figures as 
to types of films distributed, etc., are available in the Motion Picture 
Division at Washington.) 

Exhibition. — Two new theaters were built, the Lido and Odeon 
Palace (each 350 seats) in Riga. Six theaters were also reopened. 
During the year 14 theaters were wired, making, as of December 
31, 1932, a total of 47 theaters wired out of 88 in the country. In 
Riga 25 out of 34 theaters are wired. Locally assembled or German 
equipment predominates. 

Legislation. — Attempts were made to pass a law establishing a film 
monopoly by which all imported films would have to be passed by a 
government distributing agency. This w^as defeated, however. 

Getieral. — Attendance at theaters decreased considerably, owing 
to the economic conditions. 

LITHUANIA 

Office of the American Consul, Kaunas 

Production. — There is no production of feature films and no 
studios. Small firms exist for the purpose of preparing subtitles 
and for developing films. One of these has produced a number 
of shorts (total length about 18,000 meters) showing scenes of 
Lithuanian life. There are also several cameramen who specialize 
in taking scenes of current events. 

Distribution. — About 486 films were censored for release in 1932 as 
against 413 in 1931. Approximately 25 percent of these were from 
the United States, the others being nearly all German. Practically 
all were sound films. 

Exhibition. — Two new theaters w^ere opened during the year and 
12 were closed. The 2 new theaters were the Lyra located at Plunge 
and the Dziugas located at Telsiai. This makes a total of 67 
theaters in Lithuania, exclusive of Memel which has two theaters. 
Seventeen theaters were wired during the year, all with sound on 
film, making a total of 42 wired as of December 31, 1932. Twenty- 
two have sound on both disk and film, 12 sound on film alone, and 
8 sound on disk alone. 

Legislation.— A new censorship law in effect September 1, 1932, 
requires all titles and subtitles in Lithuanian and that a small pro- 
portion of films of Lithuanian life be shown at each performance. 

General.— Business decreased considerably during the last half 
of 1932, owing to increasing financial difficulties among the 



25 



Lithuanian people and to an increase of 15 percent in the price of 
tickets because of the establishment of an amusement-tax law (Aug. 
1,1932). The outlook for 1933 is not promising. 

NETHERLANDS 

By Commercial Attache Jesse F. Van Wickel, The Ha^e 

Production.— The Barnstyn studio is the only one in the Nether- 
lands. It has one stage, a single film recorder, and two location 
trucks. In 1932 it produced six shorts in the Dutch language of 
an estimated length of 10,000 feet. It also turned out 104 newsreels 
and about 10 educationals all in sound. There is no prospect of 
expansion of production activity during 1933. 

Distribution— A total of 337 sound features were submitted for 
censoring m 1932. There were also 50 silent features, 947 sound 
shorts, and 543 silent shorts. Of this number, 155 sound features 
and 14 silent came from the United States, 153 sound and 18 silent 
from Germany, 11 sound and 3 silent from France, 9 sound and 2 
silent from England, and the rest from other countries. 

As for the short subjects, 496 sound and 76 silent came from the 
United States, 214 sound and 83 silent from Germany, and 145 
sound and 332 silent from the Netherlands. The United States 
contributed 46 percent of the number of sound features shown, as 
against 45.4 percent from Germany, and 52.4 percent of the sound 
shorts as against 22.6 percent and 15.3 percent from Germany and 
the Netherlands, respectively. 

American films were about 90 percent in English with Dutch 
subtitles, 7 percent dubbed, and 3 percent originals. American 
prestige was maintained, owing to the showing of films with more 
action and less dialog. Trade opinion regards films with Dutch sub- 
titles as better suited than dubbed films. Since German is fairly 
well understood, German versions of several American films were 
shown. 

Exhibition. — Four new theaters were built. These were the Royal 
(700 seats) at Roermond, the Cinema Palace (800 seats) at Hoens- 
broek, Schouwberg (500 seats) at Zutphen, and Studio 1932 (300 
seats) at Rotterdam. The first two and the last have film and disk, 
the third film only. The Roxy, in The Hague, and New Central, 
in Heli^iond, each added 100 seats. Many houses were redecorated 
and otherwise improved to meet the demand for better theaters. A 
few theaters in small towns closed. Eighteen theaters , were wired 
in 1932, 9 for film and disk, 7 for film, and 2 for disk only. This 
makes a total of 233 theaters wired out of 253. 

Legislation. — There has been no legislation which specifically af- 
fects American films adversely. 

General. — As a result of the continuance of economic difficulties, 
theater attendance recorded a substantial decrease which could not 
l)e overcome even with reduced admission prices. Distributors in 
most cases had to be satisfied with smaller rentals, and there was 
a more restricted demand for films, especially expensive features. 
Yet it was these that drew the largest attendance. 



26 



NORWAY 

Bj Trade Commissioner Gndmn Carlaon, Oslo 

Production. — Five sound features in Norwegian were produced 
in 1932. These were: En Glad Gutt (A Happy Boy), Fantegutten 

(The Vagabond Boy), Lalla Winner (Lalla Wins), Skjaergaards 
Flitt (Seacoast Flirt), and a film for Bjornson's Centenary. 
Another film, Vi Som Gaar Kjokkenveien (We Who Go the Back- 
way), has been credited to Norwegian production, but this is really 
the Norwegian version of a Swedish sound film produced by Svensk 
Filmindustri. The film on Bjornson's Centenary is really of an 
educational nature and was produced by the Kommunernes Film- 
central. The other films were produced by John Brunius, Viking 
Film, Nordisk Tonefilm, and Kasmus Breistein. 

There are no regular film studios in Norway, and the films men- 
tioned above were taken in either Swedish or Danish studios. Plans 
for 1933 include two films starring a local revue actor and four 
other features, to be taken in Sweden, both in Norwegian and 
Swedish. It is possible that Norsk Film A/S (first established in 
1931) may build a studio for sound production. 

Distribution. — During 1932, 401 (388,802 meters) American films 
were censored for release as against 202 (243,138 meters) from other 
countries. Most of these were German, with a few from England, 
Sweden, France, and Russia in that order. All but 76 were sound 
films. Nearly all the American pictures were in English with Nor- 
wegian subtitles. These did not present any real difficulty, as Eng- 
lish is surprisingly well understood. Dubbed films are not popular. 
American prestige held up very well, though German films made 
some slight headway. 

Exhibition.— Two theaters were built during the year, these being 
constructed by the municipalities of Porsgrund and Tonsberg. 
They seat 550 and 700, respectively. Thirty-six theaters were wired 
during the year, making as of December 31, 1932, 104 theaters wired 
out of 239 houses m the country. Of these, 29 have Klangfilm, 28 
American equipment, 21 Norsk Junior, 10 Nordisk, 10 Webster 
(JJorwegian), 5 Bauer, and 3 Aga Baltic. Nearly all are sound on 

Legislation.— legislation which would affect American films 
adversely is at present in effect. 

There was very little change in the general film situa- 
triDutors; in 1931, 4 features each were handled by 2 distributors 
until economic conditions improve. 

POLAND 

By Assistant Trade Commissioner Gilbert Redfern, Warsaw 

Proc^wc^wn.— Eight features, averaging 3,000 meters in length 
and costing about |20,00p each, were produced. All were in Polish, 
.tnrlioTl/'^' "'"'^"^"^ ^^^^^^ by Tobis-Klangfilm at the Falan- 
rVrt^n ' r^"" "^^^^^ Celenophon (Austrian) recorder with 
German microphone and Polish amplifiers, these belonging to the 



27 



D'Alben studio in Warsaw. The names of the features and their 
producers are: Ksiezna Lowicka (Princess of Lowicz), Muza Film; 
Glos Pustyni (The Voice of the Desert), B-W-B; Sto Metrow Mi- 
losci (100 Meters of Love), Patria Fihn; Romeo i Julcia (Romeo 
and Juliet), Belle Film; 10 percent Dla Mnie (10 Percent for Me), 
Leo Film; Bialy Slad (The White Trail), Aster Film; Palac Na Kol- 
kach (The Palace on Wheels), D'Alben Studio; Eskapada (The 
Escapade), Film Studio. The two studios referred to are the only 
sound studios in Poland, although there are several silent ones. The 
sound studios have one stage each with an annual capacity of about 
20 features apiece. Studio expansion in 1933 is improbable, but the 
number of pictures scheduled may reach 15 if funds are available. 

Distrihution. — For the year 1932 no definite figures have been 
issued, but from the best sources obtainable it is believed that some- 
thing over TOO films of all sorts from the United States were shown 
as against 300 from all other countries. 

All the American-made dialog films were in English with Polish 
subtitles. In general, the Poles seem satisfied with this, and even 
though the language is understood by few, the quality of American 
films compensate for this. No European-made film attracted par- 
ticular attention, and the local products shown made appeal largely 
on their historic and nationalistic basis. There has been generous 
praise, both from the trade and the public, as to the high average 
quality of American features throughout 1932. Jungle pictures in- 
cidentally proved particularly popular. 

Exhibition. — While no official figures are available it is estimated 
that about 10 new theaters were opened and 5 Avere rebuilt, adding 
about 4,000 seats. About 200 theaters were wired, making a total 
of around 342 out of 770 theaters of a purely entertainment char- 
acter. Over 200 installations consist of locally assembled sets and a 
scattering of many varieties of minor makes. In addition there are 
40 each of American makes and Tobis Klangfilm, 29 Zeiss Ikon, 14 
Gaumont, 10 Phillips (Dutch), 5 Moviephone, and 4 Marconi. 

Legislation. — During the latter part of 1932 it looked as though 
the authorities w^ould enact a meterage tax as a contingent subsidy 
for the domestic industry, but this was withdrawn, at least tempo- 
rarily, when it was seen that its imposition would eliminate all 
profit from film exchanges and compel them to withdraw from the 
country. 

General. — There was very little profit to the trade in 1932, and 
the exchanges did not do much better than meet overhead expenses. 
High taxes, taking in many cases between 30 and 40 percent of the 
box-office gross on foreign films, served as further detrimental influ- 
ence both to the exhibitor and the public. 

PORTUGAL 

By Commercial Attache Richard C. Long, Lisbon 

Production. — One silent feature entitled " Campinas do Ribatejo " 
(length 2,000 meters, cost approximately $10,420) was produced by 
Lisboa Films. A number of silent shorts, mostly of the educational 



28 



variety wore also producod as follows: Lisboa PMins, 70; Ulysses 
Films" 40; Secnilo Cineiuatooratico, 28. The construction of a studio 
bv the Portuo-uese branch of Tobis Klanofilni was started near Lis- 
bon, to be opened in Ai)ril. but there will probably be no expansion 
of i)roduction in 1!K3;5. 

Dif^tnbufioti.—YoY the first li months of 1932 there were shown 
393 films (30.-) ,399 meters) from the United States, 107 (103,334 
meters) from Germany, 91 (94,352 meters) from France, and 22 
(12.011 meters) from Eno-land. These were all sound films. Of 
the American films, about 90 percent are in English with Portuguese 
subtitles, the others being originals or dubbed in French or Spanish. 
Conservative trade opinion inclines toward dubbed films (preferably 
in S])anish), but there is a great demand for films in English with 
explanatory subtitles — where the American stars can appear to ad- 
vantage. American films now have the highest prestige, since sound 
films appeared, oAving to the greater amount of action in them and 
the generally high-class type I'ecently shown. Toward the end of 
1931 it looked as thcmgh German films wxmld largely displace the 
American product, but the pendulum has now swung so far back 
that a prominent distributor of German and French films has had 
to take on American films as well to satisfy his customers. 

Exhibition. — One legitimate theater, the Gimnasio in Lisbon ( seat- 
ing capacity 850), was turned into a film theater; 65 theaters were 
wired, 55 with both film and disk, 10 with sound-on-film only; 17 
used American equipment. As of December 31, 1932, 107 out of 250 
theaters have been wired, 92 with both disk and film, 5 with sound 
on disk only, and 10 with sound on film only. About 30 have Amer- 
ican makes, 22 Bauer, 12 Tobis Klangfilm, 12 Pratofone, 8 Nietzche, 
7 Philipsonor, and 4 Gaumont. 

Legislation. — One hundred meters of Portuguese-produced film 
must be shown at each j)erformance. This amount may be increased 
if Portuguese production increases. Also Portuguese dubbing may 
have to be done in Portugal. 

Genei'dl. — The general film situation was worse than in 1931 from 
the standpoint of attendance, which, though higher in Lisbon, 
showed a marked drop elsewhere. However, the quality of films im- 
proved and theater wiring was nearly 100 percent higher than in 
the previous year. 

RUMANIA 

By Acting Commercial Attache Kenneth M. Hill, Bucharest 

Fi'oduction. — There are no motion-picture companies or studios 
in Rumania. At least one attempt was made to form a local pro- 
duction company, and the Government endeavored to be of assist- 
ance by decreeing an import tax of 8 lei per meter on foreign films. 
The law, however, was declared unconstitutional by the legislative 
council and was conseciueiitly withdrawn. Without such assistance 
the project collapsed, but it is possible that new attempts at produc- 
tion will be made in Rumania. 

li^'^oCJ^^i""'-"^^ (625,674 meters) features censored in 1932, 
156 (276,728 meters) or 46 percent came from Germany, 136 (266,- 



29 



996 meters) or 40 percent from the United States, 36 (63,301 meters) 
from France, and 10 from other countries. There were 155 short 
subject and news reels shown, of which 110 came from the United 
States. This makes a total of 493 films distributed in Rumania in 
1932. About 75 of the American films were dubbed in German or 
French and all, including those shown in English, had Rumanian 
subtitles. German is the foreign language best understood in com- 
mercial circles, with French secondary. People usually prefer 
dubbed films. If the artistic quality of the picture is high, however, 
the public has no objection to films in English. 

Exhibition. — Four new theaters were constructed: Izbanda (700 
seats) and Lux (400 seats) in Bucharest, Central (400 seats) in 
Braila, and Tivoli (500 seats) in Timisoara. Three theaters — Tomis 
(100 seats), Bucharest, and Urania and Corso (each 100 seats), 
Arad — were reconstructed. These seven theaters were the only ones 
wired (sound on film) in 1932, making a total of 220 wired out of 
the 400 theaters in Rumania. Most of them have locally assembled 
equipment. 

Legislation. — .Aside from the attempted import tax, Rumanian 
legislation centered on an attempted increase in the entertainment 
tax, which was unsuccessful, owing to a 1-day strike of exhibitors. 
Rigid currency restrictions, however, had an adverse effect. 

General. — The general film situation, while less satisfactory than 
in 1931, held up very w^ell. American film prestige was enhanced by 
a number of inferior German and French films shown, and a num- 
ber of productions from the United States featuring popular stars 
were very successful. 

SPAIN 

By Assistant Commercial Attache Julian C. Greenup, Madrid 

Production.— sound features and six or eight sound shorts 
and news reels were produced in 1932. In addition, a number ot 
silent news reels were made. The features are : Pax (2,500 meters^ 
estimated cost 600,000 pesetas); El Ultimo Dia de Pompeyo (2,200 
meters estimated cost 125,000 pesetas) ; Carceleras (2,800 meters, 
estimated cost 300,000 pesetas); El Hombre que se reia del Amor 
(2 500 meters, estimated cost 450,000 pesetas) ; El Sabor de la Gloria 

2 000 meters, made over from a silent) ; Yo Quiero que me Ueyen a 
Hollywood (1,400 meters, synchronization made in Pans). Ihese 
were all products of Orphea Films S.A. (except the last, which was 
made by Star Films). Several were made for other firms. A 
French Version of one was also made. There are no fully equipped 
studios, Orphea Films, the largest, occupying one of the buildings 
'(Palacio de la Quimica, Montjuich) of the recent Barcelona exposi- 
tion It is a French organization with headquarters in Pans. An- 
other Barcelona concern, Estudios Cinematograficos Trilla La Kiver, 
is also in one of the old exhibition buildings and speciahzes in 
dubbing Last year this organization did the Spanish dubbmg for 

hiee &rman productions Rasputin " (3,000 meters, estimated 
cost 35 000 pesetas), Isabel de Austria (3,000 meters, estimated cos 
S oOO r^esetas), and Muchachas Casaderas (2,500 meters, estimated 



30 



cost 32,000 pesetas). Several otlier concerns have attempted to 
organize, and in certain cases stock has been offered and studios 
have been started, but none except those already mentioned are likely 
to produce pictures in 1933. 

Distribution. — According to a compilation of several unofficial 
but reliable surveys. 530 features (almost all sound) were shown. 
Of these, 332, about 63 percent, came from the United States. How- 
ever, this percentage would be somewhat higher if American films 
produced in France Avere taken into consideration. On a footao-e 
basis, figures for the first 11 months of 1932 show United States 65.4 
percent, France 19.6, Germany 11.6. England 1.7 percent, and the 
rest from other countries. Foreign firms entering most actively into 
this trade were Emelka (12), Aafa (20), and Ufa (14) from Ger- 
many; Gaumont (16) and Osso (10) from France; Pittaluga (12) 
from Italy; and British International Pictures (12). Most of the 
American pictures had superimposed titles Avith about 30 dubbed. 
Dubbing must be very well done and dialog at a minimum to be 
acceptable. Musicals and action films are popular. The United 
States sent over a number of excellent films, which increased 
American prestige and caused less adverse criticism than ever before 
^a?Ai&eYww.— Approximately 25 new theaters with a combined 
seating capacity of about 25,000 and 11 reconstructed theaters with 
around 10,000 seats were added in 1932. Among these were several 
of the first rank, including the Coliseum in Madrid (seating capacity 
1,600), which has a system of modern air conditioning, and the 
Carrion, also in Madrid (seating capacitv 2,000). (A complete list 
of these theaters may be secured on loan from the Motion Picture 
Division at Washington.) There are about 2,500 theaters in Spain 
including many which exhibit only 1 or 2 days a week. Of these 
487 Mrere wired in 1932, which makes a total (Dec. 31, 1932) of 
J3J wired About 150 have American equipment, 211 Orpheo Sin- 
cronic, 56 Smcrofilm, and about 200 miscellaneous. 

Legislation.— The most important legislative enactment of the year 
was the law levying 71/2 percent on all revenues from the sale or 
rental of motion pictiires. A film quota law was also agitated by 
Avhich exhibitors should show at least 10 percent of Spanish-produced 
7f?2ti! f^, g""'^''^'; crystallized into the form of a law 

in Z L^A ^^^^panish Parliament, nor is anv definite move likely 
to be .made until Spanish production increases: ^ 

PPn/ W ''^'''''^l'^'^"''^ ^^'^^^^^ ^'^ceiP^s decreased by 5 to 20 per- 
-re iter irm'w VV''^^^ ^^^e built, an even 

^^o::i::^^ir' ^ ^i^^-r' average 

SWEDEN 

By Commercial Attache T. O. Klath. Stockholm 

we^e'S;;iedl.^^^ '? '''''''^ ^^^^"^'^^ ^"^^ 1 ^il^^t feature 

weU as a numh.\ f '''"^ companies. Two outstanding shorts 
produced li rfollo^lTf/''"^-^ "^^^ '''^^'''^^ ^^bj^^ts wire also 
studb space ^^^^ gives the details of production. -and 



31 



Swedish Production of Films, by Companies, 1932 



Company and location 



Svensk Filmindustri," Stockholm. 



Europa Film, Stockholm. 



Publik Film, Stockholm. 



Ek-Film, Stockholm. 



Svea-Film, Stockholm 

Triumvir-Film, Stockholm 

Irefilm, Stockholm.. 

Swedish Movietone, Stockholm. 
Svensk-Kulturfilm, Stockholm.. 

O. Sandin, Segeltorp 

Hasse W. Tulberg, Stockholm... 
Camex, Stockholm 



Films produced 



Karlek och Kassabrist 

Kronans Rallare 

Svarmor Kommer 

Varmlanningarne 

Pojkarna pa Storholmen 

Lyckans Gullgossar 

Vi som ga Koksvagen 

Ett skepp kommer lastat 

Soderkakar.. - 

Muntra Musikanter. 

Skraddarkarlek _ 

Broderna Ostermans Huskors. 

Karleksex pressen 

Tva hjartan och en skuta 

Hustru for en dag _ 

Sten Stensson Steen 

.Augustas Lilla Felsteg 

Jag gifta mig-aldrig 

Moderna Fruar 

En Stulen Vals 

Bomans Pojke _ 

Landskamp (silent). 



Type 



Comedy, 
.-..do... 
....do... 
Musical.. 
Comedy. 
....do... 



Industrials only. 



do 

Revue 

Comedy. 

....do. 

....do 

....do... 

....do. 

....do 

....do.... 

....do 

....do 

....do 

....do 

Musical comedy. 

Comedy.. 

Propaganda 



Language 



Swedish. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
1 Norwegian. 
Swedish. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 
Do. 



I This company also produced two shorts in Swedish "Tange" and "Gamla Stan." A new company, 
Nordisk Ton Films Produktion, was established during the year and two or three more producers will 
probably start activity in 1933. Also the Standin studio will probably be increased to two or three stages in 
1933. All told, it is estimated that possibly as many as 40 Swedish features may be produced in 1933. 

Distribution. — The Swedish Fihn Censoring Bureau in 1932 exam- 
ined a total of 4,202 films (including copies) having a length of 
3,940,053 meters. Of these, 1,750 (1,776.783 meters) were American, 
1,733 (1,226,089 meters) were Swedish', and 719 (937,181 meters) 
were from other countries. Of the total number 2,039 films were 
news reels, nature pictures, etc. 

Practically all pictures distributed were with sound. 

American films, which during 1931 lost some ground in the Swed- 
ish market to German pictures, in 1932 regained their position among 
imported films during the latter part of the year, although a certain 
decline was again visible shortly before the end of 1932. 

All American-made films distributed in Sweden in 1932 with one 
exception were in their original cast and language with subtitles in 
Swedish. Only one dubbed film was shown during the year under 
review and the complete failure of this picture would indicate that 
dubbed films have no future in the Swedish market. It may well be 
stated that good American pictures in the English language and 
with subtitles in Swedish have a good market in Sweden, since Eng- 
lish is quite well understood, particularly in the larger cities. Fur- 
thermore, the public by now has become rather accustomed to Eng- 
lish talking pictures. The temporary upswing of German films in 
1931, which was not due to the German language being preferred to 
the English, now appears to have ceased in favor of the growing 
jDopularity of Swedish pictures. 

Exhibition. — Six new theaters were built. These were: Paraden, 
Stockholm (625 seats) ; Narva, Stockholm (400 seats) ; Teaterbio- 
grafen. Jonkoping (450 seats) ; Capitol, Helsingborg (520 seats) ; 
Lundbybiografen, Lundby (300 seats); Central, Skara (300 seats). 



32 



Sovon were reconstructed, these beiii<r the Rico aiul ^^'bylhm, Stock- 
lu)hii (4S'2 ixud 480 seats) ; the Bio-Rita. Hiuliksvall (11)5 seat«) ; the 
China. Fahiopmo- (402 seats) ; the Olynipia. Boias (312 seats) ; and 
the Venus, Husquarna (379 seats) : a total of 2,2o() tor all t. Only 
r.6 seats were added to their original total. 

Durina- 1982. 42 theaters were wired, maknio- as ot December 31, 
1932. 718~wires houses. This includes })ractically all the theaters in 
the country, for while the official total is aiven as about S90, nearly 
200 the^iters which shoAV films for one or two ni<ihts each week trans- 
jiort their equipment from place to place. About 300 theaters have 
Swedish equipment. Aiia-Baltic with 101 beinfr the leader. Ger- 
man devices come second with 162, of which 93 are Klani>film. In 
addition there are 92 Danish devices and about 80 from the United 
States. ]S"early all these nndvcs are for sound-on-film. Many other 
theatei's rej)laced old reproducers with more modern devices. 

L('(fif<Iat/on. — There has been no adverse legislation, except that 
censor fees will probably be raised on first copies and lowered on 
others. Swedish films, of which many more copies are distributed, 
would benefit as against those imported. 

General. — The year 1932 was a successful one for the Swedish 
motion-picture industry. The silent picture practically disappeared. 
With nearly all of the cinemas in Sweden equipped W'ith some kind 
of sound-reproduction apparatus, the demand for Swedish talkies, 
particularly in the rural districts, has increased considerably as 
compared with foreign pictures. 

Furthermore, the Swedish motion-picture industry appears to be 
regaining its former position in the international market. Aktie- 
bolaget Svensk Filmindustri, the leading film producer in Sweden, 
recently made arrangements with distributors in England, Italy, 
Spain. Poland, and Rumania for distribution of several pictures 
during 1933. This is quite remarkable, since the Swedish language 
is little understood outside of the Scandinavian countries. Several 
trials have been made with subtitles in the respective languages with 
good results reported. 

It is notable that despite the prevailing business depression, which 
has made most Swedish branches of activity suffer heavy losses dur- 
ing the last two years, the motion-picture producers and exhibitors 
seem to have maintained their position very well. No statistics 
showing total box-office receipts during 1932 are available, but it is 
believed that there is practically no change from the preceding year 
when the gross revenue was about 30,000.000 crowns. 

SWITZERLAND 

By Assistant Trade Commissioner John T. Harding, Berne 

Production.— n\Qv^ was no marked change in production from 
the previous year. Four feature films were completed or under way 
and quite a number of sound and silent industrial and educational 
hlms were put out, most of them by seven producers Of the fea- 
tures a 2,700-meter sound version of the Battle of Tannenburg, pro- 
duced by Praesens A. G. of Zurich, and a film entitled " Die Herr- 
gotts Grenadiere,' produced by Gefi of Berne, were the most note- 



worthy. The former was taken in Germany, and sound work on 
the latter was also done in German studios^ there being no sound 
studios in Switzerland. Sound equipment can be verv easily rented 
from Germany. 

DiHtrihution. — No statistics are available on distribution, but Ger- 
man, French, and American films (in that order) commanded the 
market. Films in English with subtitles in French or German be- 
came increasingly difficult to place, but better success was achieved 
by dubbed films. This type, if well done and if action, songs, and 
music take tlie place of dialog, is probably best suited. 

Exhibition. — There will be no special changes during the year as 
regards theaters constructed or reconstructed. Figures show that 
at the end of the year there were 327 theaters seating about 121,200. 

During 1932, 30 theaters were Avired, 15 with sound on film, 2 
with sound on disk, 9 with both, and 4 unknown. Thus as of Decem- 
ber 31, 1932, 201 theaters were wired, 103 with hound on fihn. (5 
with sound on disk, 88 with both, and 4 iniknown. There are about 
50 American makes, by far the greater proportion being of German 
origin such as Klangfilm, Bauer, and Zeiss Ikon. 

Leg'tslat'/oii . — There is no special legislation inimical to American 
films. 

General. — The decline in box-office receipts was the most >;ignifi- 
cant trend during the year, but otherwise the Swiss motion-picture 
industry underwent no marked cliange. 

TURKEY 



By Commercial Attache Julian E. Gillespie, Istanbul 



Production. — Turkey's one studio, located in Istanbul, was estab- 
lished in August 1932; stage space, 375 square meters; u,ses Tobis 
Klangfilm recorders and De Bry (French) developing equipment; 
cost, approximately $56,000; operated by Ipekdji Bros. Two 
Turkish-language features were produced (one released ni 1932). 
The length of these was 2,800 and 3,000 meters, respectively. Several 
short news reels were also produced. Six features and about a dozen 
shorts and news reels are planned for 1933— altogether about 27.000 
meters. 

DistHhuthon. — During 1932. 16G sound features were released. 
The United States supplied 61 (37 percent), Germany 45 (27 per- 
cent), France 40 (25 percent), and the rest came from other countries. 
As compared with 1931, the United States and Germany iin])r()ved 
their positicm at the ex])ense of France. This trend will probably 
continue in 1933. French is the foreign language best understood 

in Turkey. ^ . i . x 

Exhibitiou.— One new theater of 800 seats (located at Bursa) was 
built and one theater (the Magic of 750 seats located at Izmir) wa.s 
closed During 1932, 17 theaters were wired, makmg a total of 44 
theaters, seating 27.020. sound equipped at the end of the year. Ot 
those wired in 1932, 15 have sound on film and 2 sound on disk. 
As to makes. 12 are Zeiss-Ikon, 2 Bauer, 1 Survox. and 2 assembled 
locally Of the total 44 wired theaters 19 have Zeiss-lkon ecpiip- 
ment 10 American, 5 Nietzche. 5 assembled locally, 2 Bauer. 2 



34 



Survox, and 1 Tobis. Forty are for sound on lilm and 4 sound on 

^^^hgiMion.— In November 1931 the British Government estab- 
tablished quotas on fihns except news reels and educational films. 
These, set at about 700 kilos per month, have been suthcient to cover 
all needs. The quota restrictions have since been removed by decree 
of January 25, 1933. Likewise in July 1932 a new national censor- 
sliip board was established under clearly defined regulations, and 
films passed by the board may now be shown anywhere in Turkey. 

UNITED KINGDOM 

By Trade Commissioner Martin H. Kennedy, London 

Production— The total number of filins of British production reg- 
istered during 1932, as shown by the British Board of Trade returns, 
was 234, with an aggregate total footage of 1.050,514 feet. Of this 
number, 156 were feature sound films with a total length of 974,299 
feet, and 70 Avere short sound films totaling 72,564 feet; 5 were 
silent feature films with a total footage of 30,462 feet, and 3 were 
silent short films having a total length of 3,651 feet. 

Compared Avith the figures of British production for 1931, sound 
feature films show an increase of 25 in number and 138,032 in foot- 
age, and short sound films an increase of 28 and 30,114 in footage. 
Silent feature films decreased in number from 10 to 5 and silent 
shorts increased from 1 to 3. There was, however, a decline in the 
total footage of 33,503. 

British International Pictures Corporation was the largest single 
producer of the year, having 26 sound features and 1 short sound 
film with footage of 168,837 and 1,800, respectively. This produc- 
tion represents 16 percent of the total British footage for 1932. 

British and Dominions, Gainsborough Pictures, and Gaumont- 
British Picture Corporation together registered 24 feature sound 
films with a^ total length of 175,261 feet and 3 short films with a 
total of 6,477 feet, which together represented approximately 17 
percent of the total British production. 

The efforts of an American company and British and Dominions 
were about equal, as each company produced about 13 sound fea- 
tures, with 3 sound shorts in addition to the credit of the former 
company. The latter company, however, exceeded the production 
of the former in length of film by about 19,000 feet. 

llie production accredited to Twickenham, Gainsborough, Real 
Art Productions, Associated Talking Pictures, British Instructional, 
and another American company was about the same in number of 
Wms and footage. The remaining balance of 126 films was accred- 
ited to about 40 small producers engaged largely in meeting the 
demands for "quota" films. About 25 of this group appeared for 
the first time as producers in 1932. 




h!r^w;V'' 1QOO ^^'^ short sound films declined in num- 

oer ciuiing 1932. the total registered from all countries being 807, 



35 



Avhich represents a decrease of 23 percent of the number registered 
in 1931. ^ 

During the past year a reasonably rigid -economy policy prevailed 
and there was no disposition in the trade to parade exaggerated film 
cost figures or star salaries. It is generally thought that costs of 
film making were, as a result of this policy, somewhat reduced during 
the past year. The more elaborate films of the vear. such as " Rome 
Express", cost approximately £40,000, while the average film 
ranged in cost from £6,000 to £15,000 each. It is probable, therefore, 
that the total outlay for the 156 sound feature and 70 sound short 
films produced during 1932 did not exceed £1,800,000 or api)roxi- 
mately $9,005,800 at par. (A list of companies together with sta- 
tistics covering the films produced by them and also a complete list 
of British films produced in 1932 are on file in the Motion Picture 
Di vision at Washington. These will be loaned for a short period on 
request.) 

There were 16 studios in operation in and about London at the 
end of 1931. These had 26 stages and an annual capacity with one 
shift per day of approximately 257 feature films. 

During 1932 the Asdic Recording Co., Ltd., which is devoted to the 
production of shorts and industrial pictures, added one new stage. 
This company, however, is not as yet prepared to produce feature 
films. Gaumont-British completed' its elaborate reconstruction in 
June by adding three new stages. 

Sound City, Ltd., built an entirely new studio at Shepperton, Mid- 
dlesex, having two stages and a capacity of 15 feature films per year. 

Publicity Films at Wimbledon, London, also added one stage dur- 
ing the year. This company is given over to the production of short 
films for industrial jDurposes. 

With these expansions, 7 stages, the capacity of all the studios was 
enhanced from 257 to approximately 300 feature films per year. 

During the latter part of 1932 a large American company which 
had taken over a 10-year lease of one of the British and Dominion 
studios withdrew from the production field in England and turned 
back the lease to the British and Dominion Co. 

During 1932 many additions were made to the equipment of the 
studios, and the technical staff in many of them was greatly strength- 
ened by the addition of technicians from the American studios. Sev- 
eral cameramen of long experience in those studios have been en- 
gaged by British studios in line with the modern policy of the 
British producer, which is designed to strengthen and improve the 
technique of the studio and to enhance the quality of the British 
films. 

The total floor space of the 16 British studios on December 31, 1932, 
was approximately 310,000 square feet, that of Gaumont-British 
alone l3eing 100.000 square feet. 

Owing to the fact that British studios have been running below 
their cajjacity, there has been considerable competition among them 
for productions, with the result that information relating to their 
equipment and capacity frequently appears in journals devoted to 
the motion-picture industry; and in practically all of them studies 
space is now available to prospective producers. 



36 



For oxaniplo. the British International VicUuv Corporation has 
a caparitv of 56 pictures but produced durinjr the year only 28; and 
British and Dominion and Gainsborouoh with a capacity of (,2 pro- 
duced onlv 24: while Gauniont-Britisli with a '^''\V'\''J:^y <>t 50 pro- 
duced onlv 12. (Detailed statistics on individual J^ritisli studios are 
on file in'the Motion Picture Division at Washington and may be 
secured on loan for a short period.) 

Tiie plans of the studios for 1933 jjrodiiction have not as yet fully 
matured, but definite information has been received relating^ to ap- 
l)roximately 75 feature films. 

The Gaumont-British and Gainsborouoh prooranis for 1933 defi- 
nitely includes 14 feature films. During the year these companies 
wiU produce a large number of comedies which will be staged by 
j)opular comedians who are under contract with the Gaumont-Brit- 
ish Co. It is believed that the output of these studios for 1933 will 
be in the neighborhood of 28 feature films. 

Gaumont-British produced, in cooperation with Islington and 
(lainsborough studios, 13 feature films in 1932, and in conjunction 
with tlie Ufa company in Berlin at Neue Babelsberg studios the 
English version of three feature films — " Happy Ever After " Early 
to Bed ", and " F. P. I." — were produced. The same company pro- 
iluced in Berlin, but not in conjunction with Ufa studios, " Tell Me 
Tonight." The full program of Gaumont-British in conjunction 
with Gainsborough and Islington studios for 1933 includes 40 fea- 
ture films. 

Owing to the fact that very frequently studios by arrangement 
divide their work of production, any reliable forecast of the work 
for the future or figures relating to the output of each studio are 
almost impossible to obtain. 

The British and Dominions, Elstree, program for 1933 already 
includes G feature films, and it is considered probable that the com- 
pleted program for the year will embrace about 13 feature films. 

British International Pictures at Elstree completed 52 pictures in 
1932, representing one release per week for one year; 28 of these were 
feature films. This year the policy of this company is to reduce the 
number of its productions in order to make larger pictures, particu- 
larly comedies, for wdiich at this time there exists a considerable de- 
mand. It is estimated, however, that the year's ])roduction will 
include 18 or 20 feature films. 

British Instructional studios at Welwyn, Hertfordshire, completed 
tlunng 1932, 8 feature films and one 4-reel feature, and it is pro- 
])osed during 1933 to limit their production to 5 feature films and 
3 or 4 shorts, together with 12 single-reel subjects. 

It is safe to say, however, that the total production of all the 
studios for 1933 will fall slightly short of the 1932 production, which 
was 143 feature films. 

Dijifnhufion.—The extent to which American sound feature films 

participated m the British market during 1932 more clearly appears 

from an examinaticm of the footage accredited to them. The total 

iootage of all featui-e films registered during 1932 was 4,017,576. 

I his total IS divided as foUows: British, 974.299 feet* American 

^"Ji-'--? I^''*' ^^"tinental and other countries, 304,197 feet; total 
4.02(,;)(0 feet. ' 



37 



It will uj)pear that the Anieiican sliare of tlic British souiKi-fiim 
Irade during 19132 was approximately 69,5 percent, while the British 
sound fihn participated to the extent of 24.8 i)ercent, and feature 
(ilnis of continental and other countries participated to the extent of 
(').2 percent. 

The total footage of feature films shown to the trade and the total 
footage of feature films registered during 1982 are about equal. It 
sometimes happens, however, that the number of registered films falls 
shoi t of the number of trade-shown films. This is due to the fact 
that films must be trade-shown l)efore they are permitted to be reg- 
istered, and occasionally at the trade showing pictures are discovered 
which do not promise enough to justify registration. For example, 
during 1932 one of the foreign feature silent films which was trade- 
shown was not registered thereafter. Consequently its footage is 
not included in the total footage of foreign feature films registered 
from continental and other countries. 

The total footage of short films, including three silent films which 
were registered with the Board of Trade during 1932, was 949,157, 
()!• about 20 percent of the total. British shorts accounted for 13.5, 
while the contribution from American and others accounted for ap- 
proximately 86.5 percent. The share of continental and other coun- 
tries was negligible. 

Summary of Films Registerei* in the United Kingdom in 198"2 



Type 


British 


1 

American 
and other 


Feature films: 






Sound, number 


156 


477 


Total footage 


943, 837 


3, 035, 275 


Silent, number 


5 


1 


Total footage 


30, 402 


8, 002 


Average footage. . . 


6,051 


6,236 

1 
1 

1 



Type 


British 


American 
and other 


Short films: 

Sound, number 

Total footage 

Silent, number 


70 

72, 564 
3 

3, 651 
1,044 


737 
872, 942 


Total footage 

A verage footage . _ _ 


1, 184 


Total footage 


1,050,514 3.916.219 



Tkaue-Shown Films in the United Kingdom. 19*30, 1931, and 1932 









1932 


Nationality 


1930 


1931 


All talk- 
ing 


Synchro- 
nized 


Silent 


Total 




142 


139 


140 


13 




153 




519 


470 


440 


9 




449 




49 


16 


17 


1 




18 




22 


10 


4 


3 




7 




5 


4 


2 


5 




7 




2 


1 




1 




1 




2 


2 


1 






1 




6 


5 




1 


1 


2 












1 


1 








2 






2 


Total 


747 


647 


606 


33 


2 


641 





From the foregoing table it will be noted that the total number 
of trade-shown films during 1932— 641— was only 6 short of the 
1931 total. This showing is considered remarkable in view of the 



38 



difficulties ^Yhicll the motion-picture industry encoimtered during 
tlic pa>^t year. It is some evidence of the virihty and resourceful- 
ness of the production units of the industry. The British contribu- 
tion to the total number of trade-shown films tor WS2 showed a 
cvain of 14 films (from 139 to 153) over the 1931 total; while the 
American total of trade-shown films experienced a decline of 21 
(from 470 in 1931 to 449 in 1932). 

American participation in the British market has been well main- 
tained. In 1930. 69.5 percent of the trade-shown films were Ameri- 
can while in 1931 and 1932 the percentage totals were 72.6 and 70.3, 
respectively. (A table analyzing trade-shown films during 1930, 
1931. and 1932 according to "type and character, together with ex- 
planatory comment, is on file in the motion-picture division at 
Washington and will be loaned on request.) 

It will be noted that 39 foreign feature films were registered in 
the United Kingdom, exclusive, of course, of those from the United 
States. The names and other statistical facts relating to these are 
on file in the motion-picture division and will be loaned on request. 

Exhibition. — The total number of cinemas, new and old, in Eng- 
land, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland was estimated on De- 
cember 31, 1932, to be 5,058, of which 4,002 were wired for sound and 
1.056 remained unwired. During the year 1932, 79 new theaters 
were constructed and equipped with sound installations, 44 of these 
being of American origin, while approximately 233 silent picture 
houses were wired for sound, making the total 4,314. In order to 
ascertain the present position of silent theaters in the British Isles 
at the end of 1932 not only the number of silents wired during that 
year must be considered but also the mortality among the silents 
caused by the depression and the advent of new theaters in the 
immediate vicinity. During 1932, according to the records of the 
Cinematograph Kenters Society, 33 of the silent-picture houses 
passed out of existence. 

According to the estimate of prominent equipment organizations, 
there remained in England on December 31, 1932, 652 silent cinemas. 
This figure, added to the number wired during the year and taking 
into account the number reported to have gone out of existence, 
brings the total to 918, which leaves 141 silents unaccounted for, 
according to the estimates of the number in existence at the end of 
1931. 

It has been suggested by the same equipment organizations that 
accurate statistics as to the number of silent houses in the British 
isles have never been available, and that in considering figures relat- 
ing to silent houses the number reported could safely be discounted 
by 10 percent, f his rule applied in this case would tend to confirm 
tlie figures which have been set forth as being approximately correct. 

^r. !io ^''•T fVi ""^Ti '^'i'"?-:'' ^"^^^ ^^"^"i^g the calendar year 1932 
m the British Isles, all of which were wired for sound reproduction. 

Tn^f '^Ji total seating capacity of 101,309. This number falls 
shoit ot the new cinema constructions during 1931 by 21, while 

af comnTSnTtl new theaters shows a decrease of 41,610 seats 
as compared with the previous year 

fon^wim' fi'^rP^^-llv.^ construction since 1929 is indicated by the 
tollo^Mng figuie.s: 1930, new theaters 70, seating capacity 105,000; 



39 



1931, new theaters 100, seating capacity 143,000; 1932, new theaters 
79, seating capacity 101,000. 

An examination of the figures relating to seating capacity in 1932 
reveals the fact that during the year there were no cinemas of the 
so-called larger or super type constructed. In 1931, for example, 5 
theaters were constructed with a seating capacity ranging from 
4,000 to 5,000, 16 between 3,000 and 4,000, and 36 between 2,000 and 
3,000; while in 1932, 16 theaters were constructed having a seating 
capacity ranging f rom 2,000 to 2,600, and 34 were built with a 
seating capacity ranging from 1,000 to 2,000. 

The average seating capacity of the new theaters wired during 
1932 is approximately 1,290, which is considerably lower than 1,450, 
the average for 1931. 

During 1930 the obvious trend was toward the larger, luxurious 
super type of cinema. Since then it has been demonstrated by 
experience that cinemas of the smaller luxurious type with a seating 
capacity of from 1,450 to 2,500 are more lucrative and more practical 
in actual operation. 

(A list of new theaters constructed in the British Isles, wired and 
equipped with talking-picture apparatus during 1932, together with 
location, seating capacity, and name of equipment in each case, is on 
file in the Motion Picture Division at Washington and will be loaned 
on request.) 

As previously indicated, 233 cinemas were wired for sound in 

1932. Of these, approximately 40 used American equipment. Of 
others the most popular were British Thompson-Huston with 55, 
B.A. with 24, Morrison's with 21, A.W.H. with 17, B.T.P. with 16. 
Practically all of these were for sound on film. 

Of the 4,314 cinemas wired for sound as of December 31, 1932, 
just over 2,000 have American equipment, while British Thompson- 
Huston, B.A., and B.T.P. lead locally made equipments Avith totals 
of 612, 466, 375, and 287, respectively. (A list of sound installa- 
tions by makes in the United Kingdom for the years 1930, 1931, and 
1932 is on file in the Motion Picture Division at Washington and 
will be loaned on request.) 

Legislation. — The vexed question of the Sunday opening of 
cinemas was settled by Parliament during the year by the passage 
of the Sunday Entertainment Act. Under the new law the local 
authority may hold an inquiry into the application for Sunday open- 
ing, and may grant it under certain conditions, one of which is that 
a certain percentage of the receipts must go to charity or to the 
support of the Film Institute. A committee selected from all de- 
partments of the trade has been appointed to draft a constitution 
designed to cover the objects of this organization. 

The general form of the institute is based on the report of the 
Commission on Cultural and Educational Films and is designed to 
assist in the general development of films as a means of amusement 
and culture. 

Under the Finance (no. 2) Act of 1931 the entertainment duty 
was extended downward to embrace tickets of all prices. During 
1932 the cinemas found this tax burdensome, and a serious effort was 
organized for the purpose of having the tax removed. The rate of 
taxation is now as follows : 



40 



Whoiv tho amount of pavnu-nt for admission, exclinlinu tlu- amount of .luty— 

Exceeds 2,1. an.l <loos not exm..l 2V^1^ 1 l^!^'''''- 

Exc-eods 2>^.l. and ,loos not exceed (k1 1 l^^; 

Exceeds (W. and does not exceed 7 /,d S I"''^'" 

Exceeds TV'.d. and does not exceed KHI puue. 

Exceeds iod. and <loes not exceed Is. iiV.il 2 pence halfpenny. 

Exceeds Is. ()'/.<!. and does not exceed Is. 3d-— pence. « , , 

!i Q.r ^ pence for the hvst Is. 

Exceeds Is. 3d .^^^ ^ j,^.^^^^^, 

every Txl. or part of 
5d. over Is. 3d. 

On March 31 the renters' quota moved up from 12^2 to 15 per cent. 
In view of this fact and for purposes of convenience there is given 
below a hst of quotas (both renters'^ and exliibitors') pi-ovided for 
under the cinematograph act of 1927: 

Schedule I : Muximum fee 

£ s 

On an application f.ir the registration of a film 1 1 

On an applicati(m f<ir a renter's license 5 5 

On an application for an exhibitor's license 1 1 

For each theater in resi)eit of which a license is applied for. 
Schedule II : 

Renters' quota ; 

Percent 

Year endinjr March 31. 1929 7V2 

Year ending March 1930-31 10 

Year ending March 1932 I21/2 

Year ending March 1933 15 

Year ending March 1933-35 171/2 

Year ending March 1936-38 20 

Exhihitors" quota : 

Year ending September 30, 1929 5 

Year ending September 1930-31 

Year ending September 1932 10 

Year ending September 1933 12% 

Year ending September 1984-35 15 

Year ending September 1936-38 20 

During the j^ear the number of British fihns shown greatly ex- 
ceeded the number required by the quota act. 

General. — Tlie year 1932 witnessed a steady improvement in the 
quality, technical skill, and growth in popularity of both British 
and American films, an outstanding evidence of this being found 
in the fact that notwithstanding the financial hardships of the times 
the patronage of the cinema remained steadv throughout the year. 
Thus at the end of 1932 the general position of the film industry in 
the United Kingdom Avas approximately as f oUoavs : 

Average weekly attendance at British cinemas 24 000 000 

(These figures vary from week to week according to the qualitv 
of the film and the weather. A good film and bad weather 
increases this attendance by 4.000.000; a poor film program plus 
hne weather will reduce the average to about 20 000 000 ) 

Average price of admission 8d 

Ye^H? •itt^iultnno'Ti'l^ ' ^"'"^ aVe7ag7;7e7Jimat"ed";t: £800, 000 

\eail> attemlance at the cmemas of Great Britain 1 248 000 000 

Gross box-office annual receipts _ _ ^' ^nn 

Many charges are made upon this enormous"sum7buritTs';.ife 

?oc~™'"^^"^ £7,000.000 

£23, 600, 000 



41 



From this sum tiic cinemas aiv obliged to pay all rents, rates, 
and taxes and other maintenance charws, to;;ethei- witli the 
wages of the greater number of the ino.OCM) i)eoi)le employed in 
the British tilm industry. This amount also includes a reason- 
able dividend on th(> total investment (about £8().(){)0,000) . 
To tilm renters who are film brokers dealing on behalf of the 

producers (the actual tilm makers) £11,0(XJ, 000 

One of the outstanding events during 1932 has been the .success 
of the nonstop vaudeville-cinema combinations. Approximately 10 
theaters in the West End of London, which for a time were closed, 
took on this form of entertainment. Among the theaters so con- 
verted are included the Windmill, Daly's, the Prince of Wales, the 
London Pavilion, and the Leicester Square Theater. In general the 
nonstop theaters have been fairly successful, and several of them 
increased their popularity by the addition of talking pictures and 
news reels. 

One of the outstanding features of the motion-picture industry 
has been the steady growth in popularity of the sound news reel. 
At the end of 1932 eight London cinemas were showing sound news 
films exclusively. Four of these were brought into this service during 
1932, while Birmingham added two news-reel cinemas and Leeds 
one during the same period. 

There are five news-reel companies in operation in England. These 
companies employ in the sound-news service in the British Isles 
about 30 sound trucks, which are placed strategically throughout 
the country. The latest recruit to this group of cinemas is the Rialto, 
which came in as an exclusive news-reel house within the past few 
months. 

The news-reel theaters in the London area are : Piccadilly News 
Theater. Windmill Street; Rialto, Coventry Street; Cameo, Bear 
Street; Strand News Theater, off the Strand; Tatler News Theater; 
Sphere News Theater; World New^s Theater, Paddington. 

YUGOSLAVIA 

By Commercial Attache Emit Kekich, Belgrade 

Production. — A total of 286 films (62,112 meters) were produced. 
These were all cultural and educational shorts and news reels. Of 
these, 88 (25,104 meters) were produced by Prosvetni Film, 36 (6,270 
meters) b}^ Novakovic Film, 31 (8,549 meters) by Svetloton, and the 
rest scattering. They w^ere produced in the studios of the companies 
just mentioned, but these are snuill and are wared with local equip- 
ment. Some slight .studio expansion is probable in 1933. 

Distribution. — Seven hundred and twenty-three films (594,994 
meters) were released. Of this amount, 322,360 meters were Ger- 
man and 185,484 meters American, the latter comprising a total of 
only 52 pictures as compared with 116 in 1931. However, American 
companies operating in the market withheld their releases during 
most of the year on account of the film contingent legislation. The 
American films relea.sed w^ere chiefly English with local subtitles. 
Only about nine productions were shown in direct shot or dubbed 
foreign versions. German is the language best understood. Amer- 



42 



ican film prestige held up so well that the lack of thesg had an adverse 
effect on theater attendance. V, 

Exhibition. — One new theater, the Tonbioskop in Belgrade (500 
seats) , was built, and a few theaters were reconstructed, adding 400 
seats. Fifty-three theaters were wired, making as of December 31. 
1932, a total of 184 theaters (seating capacity 59.000) wired out of 
338 in the country. Most of the equipments used are locally assem- 
bled, and all but 30 are sound on film. 

Legislation. — The contingent legislation (details of this are given 
in Foreign Market Bulletin T-63, entitled Yugoslavia Institutes a 
Film Quota ", February 1933) was in force during practically the 
whole year, and as American companies found it impossible to op- 
erate at a profit under the law, they withdrew from the market. 
There is some prospect that this law may be repealed or modified. 

General. — Turnover in the film trade in 1932 in Yugoslavia was 
probably at least 30 percent under the year before, when business 
was not particularly good. This was partialW due to the economic 
depression and partially to the fact that restrictive legislation intro- 
duced kept American film companies out of the market so far as new 
sound productions were concerned. The total turnover normally is 
around 160,000.000 dinars a vear. out of which the Government gets 
about 35,000,000 dinars. 

O 



Department of Commerce 

BUREAU OF FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC COMMERCE 



REVIEW OF FOREIGN FILM 
MARKETS DURING 1936 




Apri? 1937 



Price 10 cents 



Publicati o ns of the M o tion Picture Section of the Electrical Division 



Motion Pictures Ab ro ad. 

T-A'ice a month the Seotion releases a foreign market bulletin covering 
some important phase of the motion-picture situation abroad. This bulletin may 
cover one foreign m.arket or a number of foreign markets and is based on re- 
ports received in the Section from foreign offices of the Department. The 
subscription price is $1.00 per year. 

Cu rrent Rele ases of Nont he atric al Films and Film Notes . 

This service started in December 1932. As its name implies, it consists 
of the merging of a former bulletin entitled "Nontheatrical Film Notes", 
containing ne.vs notes covering nontheatrical film developments in all coun- 
tries, with a list of industrial and educational films (together with supple- 
mentary data on these) released by film producers during the preceding month. 
This bulletin is issued once a month, and should be of great value to all 
users of nontheatrical films. The yearly subscription rate for this service is 
$1.00. 

S?2I!i^ Wide Motion Picture Develop-nents . 

Each Saturday the Section releases a series of news items relating to 
motion-picture developments abroad. This service is free, but it is confined 
almost exclusively to the trade and lay press, which republishes the items. 

Sta tistical Service . 

The Section's statistical service consists of a single statement. No. 
2900. This statement shows exports to all countries of motion-picture films, 
sensitized, not exposed; negatives; positives; other sensitized films, not 
exposed; moticn picture camersa (standard and substandard); projectors (stand- 
ard and substandard); motion picture sound equipment, projection arc lamps. 
These statezients are issued each month and the price is $1.00 per year. 



2487 



UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE 

DANIEL C. ROPER. SECRETARY 



BUREAU OF FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC COMMERCE 
ALEXANDER V. DYE. DIRECTOR 



REVIEW OF FOREIGN FILM 
MARKETS DURING 1936 



By 

NATHAN D. GOLDEN. CHIEF 
MOTION PICTURE SECTION. 
ELECTRICAL DIVISION 



APRIL 1937 PRICE 10 CENTS 



PL 



S?9 



F 0 R E W 0 R D 



The motion picture industry of the United States has a large stake in 
world markets. One of the outstanding problems facing American producers in 
the export field is the growth of the restrictive legislation designed pri- 
marily to stimulate the production of domestic films in various countries. 

The extent of our foreign market together with existing restrictions in 
the leading countries of the world are briefly summarized for the use of 
the American motion picture industry in this bulletin, which has been pre- 
pared in the Motion Picture Section of the Electrical Division with the co- 
operation of the Foreign Commerce Service of this Bureau and the State Depart- 
ment. 




Alexander V. Dye, 
Director. 



2487 



REVIEW CF FOREIGN FILM MARKETS DURING 1936 



The year 1936 brought to American producers of motion pictures the 
highest foreign revenues since the introduction of sound films in foreign mar- 
kets in 1929-30 This is particularly gratifying in view of the intensive 
efforts on the part of foreign countries to establish their own film-producing 
industries. It is not difficult to determine the reasons for this increase 
in revenues when one realizes that the year witnessed the production of the 
finest crop of pictures ever produced by the American film industry, together 
with a definite return of economic prosperity in the major foreign markets. 

While American distributors are still faced with legislative barriers in 
the free flow of their product in many foreign countries, those films which 
qre permitted entry in restricted markets are so superior to the native pro- 
duct that their dollars and cents returns make up for lack of quantity distri- 
bution. The year 1936 has heard many rumblings for an intensification of leg- 
islation designed primarily to restrict American films and to foster domestic 
production in many of our choicest foreign markets. 

Chief among the foreign countries urging a change in its quota set-up 
is England, by far the most impctant rsvenue producer for American films. 
The Moyne report from the Board of Trade Committee, appointed to consider a 
renewal of the Cinematograph Films Act of 1927 which expires in 1938, made 
recommendations which, if adopted by the British Parliament, may have far- 
reaching effects or the American motion-picture industry. The report recom- 
mends an extension of the present quota system for another period of 10 years, 
to be increased from the present 20 percent to 50 percent if conditions war- 
rant; the establishment of a film council or committee to pass on the quality 
of films produced for quota purposes; the Government to take measures to 
assist the local industry in obtaining fresh capital; that a quota be es- 
tablished for short films commencing with 15 percent for distributors and 
10 percent for exhibitors. Responsible to a great extent for these quota 
recommendations, is a very intensive national feeling that American habits 
of speech, dress, and local customs may become widely adopted in Great Bri- 
tain. It is presumed that on the basis of the above recommendations of the 
Moyne Committee, the Board of Trade will draft a bill to be presented to 
Parliament before the Films Act of 1927 expires. 

What is in store for American film interests in France at the end of the 
trade pact in July 1937 is difficult to prophesy. It must be remembered 
that the existing Franco-American trade treaty was not negotiated or signed by 
the present French Government, and from present indications something in the 
way of legislation detrimental to American film interests looms on the horizon. 

During 1936 legislation became operative in New South Wales and Vic- 
toria which provides quotas in those two States for Australian-produced 
feature films. In both cases, the quota for exhibitors is that 4 percent of 
the films shown on the screens must be Australian in the first year, increas- 
ing yearly by 2 percent until a 12 percent quota is reached in the fifth 
year. For distributors the range is from 5 percent in the first year in- 
creasing each year by 2 percent to 15 percent in the fifty year. 
2487 



-2- 



While American films are still the backbone of the exhibition busi- 
ness in Mexico, there are demands on the part of Mexican producers for legis- 
lative measures designed for their protection. The Spanish Civil War has given 
the Mexican motion picture industry tremendous impetus in recapturing its lead- 
ing position in the production of Spanish-language features. Mexican studios 
during 1936 have produced films in greater numbers than ever before in the 
history of the native industry. 

In the short space of 1 year film-producing in Finland has increased 
from one company to five. And all are operating at full speed to furnish 
the sudden demand for native language product. While the product is of an 
inferior nature, the Finnish theaters are playing to capacity, because of 
the novelty of hearing their own tongue from the screen. 

Germany, at one time among the most importan t markets for American mo- 
tion pictures, has virtually ceased to buy because of the arastic impositions 
and decrees issued against films for the avowed protection of the German cul- 
tural interests. 

The German Film Contingent Decree which expired June 30, 1936, was not 
extended, but in its place there was issued an Enabling Act which became 
effective on July 1, 1936. This decree empowers the German Propaganda Minister 
to state the conditions under which a film is to be considered as a German film 
as well as the conditions under which a foreign film may receive an import 
permit. While the wording of this new law is practically the same as that 
of the old one, the few alterations are of great importance. A German film, 
to be classified as such, must be produced by a company established under Ger- 
man law. All scenarios, music, directors, and actors must be German, and only 
such persons are considered Germans who are of German nationality and of 
Aryan descent. 

Paragraph 15 of this new law gives to the Propaganda Minister wide dis- 
cretion in barring foreign fil.-s from the country. Permits under this para- 
graph may be refused when "foreign films whose tendency or effect is injurious 
to German prestige or where films in which actors participate who have pre- 
viously appeared in pictures detrimental to German prestige." 

During the year this paragraph was invoked on numerous occasions and 
greater interpretation has been placed upon it by the censorship board in its 
refusal to pass films of American companies with Jewish actors or Jewish 
music. These new regulations do not in themselves prevent American companies 
from carrying on their business in Germany. As a matter of fact, they raise 
the number of export contingent permits thus allowing a greater number of 
foreign pictures to come in than were permitted entrance during 1935. The 
actual number of American pictures which will come in, however, will depend 
entirely upon the attitude of the Propaganda Ministry and the board of cen- 
sorship. As a result of this condition, only three American distributors 
remain now in the German market. Regulations concerning the use of blocked 



2487 



-3- 



marks have also been considerably strengthened. All of these difficulties 
will eventually force a decision from Anerican companies as to whether they 
will participate to a greater extent in domestic production by producing 
locally themselves, or by distributing locally made products, or whether 
they will entirely withdraw from the German market. 

New regulations governing the importation of American films into Italy 
were successfully negotiated in the latter months of 1936. This was not 
accomplished, however, until American companies ceased exporting their films 
to this market. Under the new regulations American firms may import 250 films 
each year, which is ample for their needs, and 20 million lire yearly will be 
permitted to be exported. There are no longer any restrictions with reference 
to mandatory method of investment in Italy of all funds above the afore-stated 
permissible export figure. 

While there is little likelihood that a quota will be favorably acted 
upon by the Egyptian Government, nationalistic propaganda is fostering the 
development of an Egyptian industry for the production of films in the Arabic 
language. The suggestion has been made to the Government by the local film 
industry proposing the compulsory use of a quota of Egyptian films in relation 
to foreign films. 

A serious situation was averted in Cuba during the past year v/hen the 
Government reversed its position, that all American films should first be 
censored by a board in Nev/ York City created for that purpose. This reversal, 
however, was not accomplished until American film companies refused to submit 
films to this board, or tc send their product to Cuba. During the year 1936 
a bill was introduced in the Cuban Senate providing for the creation of an 
organization known as the National Motion Picture Board whose functions would 
be to supervise, lend financial assistance, and generally assist in the de- 
velopment of a motion-picture industry on the Island. 

On January 20, 1935, the labor syndicate accepted the final offer of the 
American motion-picture distributors and thus brought to a conclusion a con- 
troversy which had paralyzed the Ame ican industry in Mexico since Septem- 
ber 1935. Matters relating to taxes and import duties were successfully nego- 
tiated in conferences betv/een the Minister of Finance and the distributors. 
Upon the issuance of three decrees on February 7, 1936, American companies 
again resumed the distribution of their products after an absence of nearly 4 
months. 

"Frozen" or "blocked" funds also contributed to the obstacles placed 
in the path of American companies in the transaction of their business abroad 
during 1956. Foreign Governments more than ever, during the year just com- 
pleted, were taking a direct interest in production of motion pictures. 



2487 



In some markets of Latin America and Europe there is a well-defined 
trend against "dubbed" films. In Belgium, American films with English dia- 
log and superimposed titled in French and Flemish are preferred. Our Commer- 
cial Attache advises that in Antwerp and Brussels, which are the largest 
markets in Belgium, the majority of the people understand English and prefer 
this type of film. 

In Guatemala, Dominican Republic, and Costa Rica there is a definite 
dislike for "dubbed" films. 

Exports of American motion-picture films for the first 10 months of 1936 
show a 9-million-foot gain over the same period of 1935. During the first 
10 months of 1936 a total of 171,612,451 linear feet of American negative and 
positive sound and silent films, with a declared value of $3,683,517 were ex- 
ported to foreign markets as compared with 162,238,524 linear feet with a de- 
clared value of $3,495,582 for the first 10 months of 1935. A breakdown of 
the above totals is shown in the following table: 

10 months - 1936 10 months - 1935 

Negative Quantity-feet Value Quantity-feet Value 

Silent films 1,750,362 $ 81,389 2,114,218 $ 91,642 

Sound films 8,085,831 302,193 7,762,812 330,016 

Positive 

Silent films 1,325,202 36,804 2,848,341 61,956 

Sound films 160.451,056 3,263,131 149,513,153 3,011,958 



TOTAL 171,612,451 3,683,517 162,238,524 3,495,582 

During the year 1936 foreign motion-picture production amounted to 
approximately 1,400 feature films. European production totaled 721 feature 
films during 195S, an increase of 79 pictures over 1935. Of this number the 
following countries made the largest contributions: England 217, Germany 130, 
France 125, Russia 92, Spain 32, Sweden 27, Czechoslovakia 26, and Hungary 20. 

Latin American production during 1936 fell off somewhat, only 56 features 
being accounted for, as compared with 83 films during 1935. Mexico produced 
28 features, Argentina 20, Brazil 7, and Peru 1 during the year. 

In the Far East and Near East production increased in 1936 to 674 feature 
films as against approximately 515 pictures in 1935. The leading producing 
country in the Far East was Japan with 496 features, with China furnishing 
100, India 40, the Philippines 15, Egypt 10. Australia 9, New Zealand 3, and 
Netherlands Indies 1. 



2487 



-5- 



The increased motion-picture production in foreign countries substan- 
tiates the interest exhibited by foreign governments, in the creation of 
their own producing industries. The showing of these locally produced films, 
regardless of their quality, reduces the number of play dates for our American 
product . 

The screen has become a new factor in international diplomacy, and 
some nations have attempted to tell Hollywood what shall and what shall not 
be put into films, under the threat that an offending company's products may 
be barred in toto from the market In some cases these threats have been ef- 
fective to the extent that films are either withdrawn from world circulation, 
or the objectionable stories, although purchased and paid for, are never pro- 
duced. The complete inability of foreign governments to control our produc- 
tion, and their need for national expression at home and before the rest of the 
world, are factors largely responsible for their intense interest in building 
up their own film industries. 

While the foreign outlook appears somewhat dubious, it is very evi- 
dent from the foregoing data that foreign governments bent upon establishing 
their own motion-picture industries will wield a great influence through the 
medium of legislation in accomplishing this end. The American industry, fully 
cognizant of the ulterior motives behind the creation of these legislative bar- 
riers, have but one weapon with which to combat these obstacles. This is the 
production of pictures v/ith an international appeal which are so obviously 
superior in their technique and story value to other productions that foreign 
audiences will insist on seeing them. This may result in foreign governments 
being forced by the insistent demands of natives either to remove or modify 
legislation directed against American films. 

It can be said with assurance that good American pictures, as a general 
rule, will be preferred by foreign audiences to national productions which 
with few exceptions have been of mediocre character. It follows therefore 
that the outstanding factor in the international situation will be the caliber 
of the productions which the American motion-picture industry attempts to 
market abroad. 



2487 



-6- 



ALBANIA 

LEGISLATION- 
None. 
CENSORSHIP- 

Although there exists no censorship, law in Albania, films are censored 
by a commission consisting of representatives of the Ministry of Education, the 
police, the Court, the Press Bureau, and the Prefecture. Films are censored 
from moral and political points of view. 

COMPETITION- 

The United States and Germany have almost equal shares in the film 
market in Albania, while France and Italy together account for only about 10 
percent. The Albanian public shows a considerable liking for German films 
because they are generally musical comedies while American films are mostly 
dramas. German films have always been cheaper than American films and at 
present American films are progressively increasing in price. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

None . 
PRODUCTION- 

None . 
TAXES- 

(1) Customs duties: Films imported into Albania and which are to be re- 
exported within 45 days pay a customs duty of 20 gold francs for 100 kilo- 
grams. 

(2) Municipal taxes: (a) Annual tax of 300 to 500 gold francs, accord- 
ing to importance (b) amusement tax of 6 gold francs daily. 

(3) Ministry of Finance Income Tax (not fixed). 

(4) Miscellaneous stamp taxes. 
THEATERS- 

There are 14 theaters in Albania. 



2487 



-7- 



SOUND- 

All of the 14 theaters are wired for sound. 



ARGENTINA 

LEGISLATION- 

Previous adverse criticism based on a desire of the local populace to see 
more Spanish-dialog films has been partly met by an increase in the number of 
these films exhibited during the year. The newly formed Institute Cinemato- 
grafico Argentine, under Government auspices, is expected to establish national 
regulations pertaining to the motion-picture industry, with the probability 
that the growing domestic producing industry will be favored. 

CENSORSHXP- 

Film censorship in Argentina is reasonably lenient, with each municipality 
undertaking its own censorship. It is possible that some national regulation 
will be formulated by the above mentioned Institute Cinematograf ico Argentine, 
under authority granted to it by Law No. 11,723 dated September 28, 1933. 

Censorship in the federal capital is based on Ordinance 5439, dated 
December 28, 1933, and promulgated on January 17, 1934. An honorary commission 
is composed of eight members from various offices of the municipal and federal 
Governments, supplemented by o.ne member representing the production and dis- 
tribution industry. Each of the other important cities has a censorship body 
formed somewhat along these lines. 

While there are no national censorship standards, it mav be said that 
approval is generally given to films with the exception of the following types: 
Those stressing immorality or bad taste; those which ridicule religion; those 
which contain propaganda insidious to the Government: and those which might 
lead to international complications. Scientific films may be exhibited to 
doctors or to other appropriate professions, but are generally not exhibited 
to the public. 

COMPETITION- 

About 85 percent of the films shown are American, with the remainder 
British, German, Argentine, French, Spanish, and Italian, in the order named. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Inter-American . Copyright Convention Buenos Aires, August 11, 1910, 
ratified July 13. 1934. 



2487 



-8- 



PRODUCTION- 

It is estimated that 20 locally made features were released during 1936, 
v/ith 27 more in various stages of preparation. There are 9 studioes, 9 labor- 
atories, and 30 producing companies. All studios are wired for sound. 

There are 59 distributors, 10 of which are American, located in Buenos 
Aires; many of these have branches throughout the Republic. This number in- 
cludes some of the national producers, who do their own distributing. Ren- 
tals at first-run houses approximate between 35 and 50 percent of the receipts 
after municipal taxes have been deducted. 



Each municipality imposes its own scale of taxes. In the federal capital, 
for instance, taxes are collected upon the basis of the registered seating 
capacity of the individual theater and in accordance with the returns of each 
performance. The basic tax provides that for each 10 centavos or fraction 
thereof collected for admission, and for each 100 seats or fraction of regis- 
tered seating capacity, there should be paid a tax of 14 centavos. During the 
summer season (November through March) this is reduced to 10 centavos. The 
foregoing scale applies to houses charging admission of more than 1.50 pesos 
for a "completa" (complete program consisting of several films) or 0.40 peso 
for a "seccion" (one to two pictures). Houses which charge a lower admission 
price pay a basic tax of 11 instead of 14 centavos, with 7 centavos during 
the summer season. Double the established tax is charged for continuous per- 
formances. Except in special cases, all preformances must be finished by 
12:30 a.m. (with a slight tolerance), otherwise a fine of 100 pesos is imposed . 
Failure to pay taxes within a specified limit incurs a 20 percent penalty. 



There are 207 theaters listed in the federal capital and 1,218 in other 
parts of the Republic. 



It is estimated that approximately 1,000 theaters are wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



1935 - Positive sound 



17,051,379 ft. 



$326,712 



Negative sound 



13,850 ft. 



$1,253 



1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



15,179,012 ft. 
22,609 ft. 



$270,781 
$382 



2487 



-9- 



AUSTRALIA 

LEGISLATION- 

During 1936 legislation became operative in Mew South Wales and Victoria 
which provides quotas in those two States for Australian-produced feature 
films. In both cases, the quota for exhibitors is 4 percent for the first 
year, 5 percent for the second year, 7f percent for the third year, 10 percent 
for the fourth year, and 12^ percent for the fifth year; for distributors it 
is 5 percent for the first year, 7\ percent for the second year, 10 percent 
for the third year, 12^ percent for the fourth year, and 15 percent for the 
fifth year. The operation of the quota appears to have satisfied Australian 
producers, as there has been no agitation during the year for an increase in 
its scope. 

There has been some agitation during the past year for the acceptance 
of British (produced in England) films as "quota" pictures in Australia. The 
basis for this agitation is, that Australian-produced films are accepted as 
"quota" pictures in England, whereas films produced in England do not qualify 
as "quota" pictures in New South Wales and Victoria, the two States in Aus- 
tralia which have quota laws. However, this agitation is not strong at the 
present time, and it appears that British films will not, in the immediate 
future, be given any more advantage in the Australian market than they have 
enjoyed for some time - namely free customs entry. 

There has been no serious agitation against American films, as such, 
during the year. Restrictions which were placed on the imports of many pro- 
ducts from the United States, in May 1936, did not affect films. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Very severe. A Board of Censors, which consists of three members, one 
of whom is a woman, continues to exercise censorship authority over all films 

imported or exported. Censorship appeal is vested in one person who has all 

the powers of the former three-member board. In addition to this Federal 
Censorship Board, there is a State censorship law in Victoria, but in practice 

Victoria usually accepts the Federal Censor's certificate. The Censorship 
Board passes pictures for "general" or "adult" exhibition. In all States 
except Victoria, this does not prohibit the admission of minors to shows de- 
signated for "adults" but is merely information for parents; in Victoria, a 
picture passed for "limited" exhibition can not be shown to persons between 
the ages of 6 and 16. In all States the police can act to stop the showing of 
a film, but this power is practically never used in the case of imported films. 

It has, however, been used at times to stop the screening of Australian- 
produced films, over which the Federal Censorship Board has no jurisdiction. 



2487 



■10- 



COMPETITION- 

A new company was formed in Australia during 1936 to coordinate the dis- 
tribution of films produced by several of the major studios in England. How- 
ever, British films have not during 1936 made any appreciable gains in Aus- 
tralia, where personal preference, rather than patriotic appeal, remains the 
predominating influence. American films appear still to be in as strong 
position as they were in 1935, when the United States supplied 353 of the 481 
feature pictures imported into Australia. American films have now regained 
some of the ground lost in 1933. Of all feature films imported into Australia, 
the United States supplied 76.4 percent in 1932; 71.7percent in 1933; 72.5 
percent in 1934; and 73.4 percent in 1935. The share enjoyed by British 
films was 22.6 percent; 23.3 percent; 27.1 percent and 25.6 percent. Figures 
for 1936 are not yet available, but it is believed that American films have 
more than held their own during 1936. Some individual British pictures have 
been popular, but as a class the American films remain supreme. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Presidential Proclamation of April 3, 1918. 

PRODUCTION- 

Because of quotas in New South Wales and Victoria for Australian-made 
pictures, production activity increased greatly during 1936- Six feature 
films had been completed during the first 10 months of the year, with three 
more scheduled to be finished before the end of the year. In three of these 
pictures, the lead was played by Hollywood artists who were brought to Aus- 
tralia for the purpose. The most expensive of these pictures is said to have 
cost £35,000 (about $140,000), but some cost considerably less. Critics 
agree that the quality of Australian pictures has improved considerably, but 
it appears that they still have a fair distance to go before being equal to the 
average imported film. 

Before an Australian picture can be registered as a "quota" film, it must 
pass an inspection and convince the authorities that it has attained or sur- 
passed the minimum requirements as to quality. This is designed to discourage 
the production of low-quality films, and at least one feature picture has been 
refused registration as a "quota" film because of its low quality. This re- 
quirement has had the effect of discouraging the production of extremely 
cheap films by persons without proper backing, and has tended to confine the 
increased activity to the well-established producers. 

The quota laws of both New South Wales and Victoria stipulate that dis- 
tributors shall "acquire and make available for distribution" the number of 
pictures specified. The use of the word "acquire" has caused some uncer- 
tainty as to whether che distributor must obtain the pictures only in case 



-11- 



they are available from producers, or whether the distributor must himself 
produce the pictures if necessary to obtain the required number of Australian 
films. However, it now appears that the object of the quota lep^islation was 
to assure a market for the films voluntarily produced in Australia, and not 
actually to force production. The films which have been produced so far have 
been marketed satisfactorily, and there is good reason to believe that dis- 
tributors will not be forced to become producers, but will be exempted from 
the quota requirements if they are unable to "acquire" Australian films from 
the limited supply produced voluntarily. Although the first year of the New 
South Wales quota ends on December 31, 1S36, several distributors at the end of 
November had not "acquired" any quota pictures. They are ready and v/illing to 
"acquire" pictures from others, but they are going on the assumption that 
they will not be held responsible for any failure to "acquire" Australian 
pictures by producing them. 

Distributors of American films are greatly concerned with a provision of 
the quota law which permits an exhibitor to disregard his contract for American 
films to whatever extent may be necessary to find program time for quota 
pictures. Some exhibitors are now using this to reject a film whenever they 
like, so long as the total rejections do not exceed the number of "quota" 
pictures exhibited. The distributors believe that it was not the intention 
of the legislation to permit such discretion for the exhibitor, and they are 
now seeking a correction to limit the rejection of a film to the specific 
picture actually displaced by a quota film. 

TAXES- 

The Federal Government tax for 1936 was 1 shilling per £1. For the various 
States of the Commonwealth a company is taxed only on the business done in 
that particular State. The rates vary from State to State. In New South Wales, 
where most of the film companies have their head offices for Australia, the tax 
last year ranged from 1 shilling 9 pence per £1 to 2 shilling 6 pence per £1, 
depending on the amount of income, but this has just been changed to a flat 
rate of 2 shillings 3 pence per £1. 

THEATERS- 

There are now 1,420 theaters operating in Australia. The improvement in 
box-office takings, noticeable during the past 3 /ears, was continued in 
1936 when theater attendance was probably as large as in pre-depression 
years . 

The State of New South Wales still enforces the Act providing relief to 
exhibitors on hire agreements covering sound equipment. While no such legis- 
lation has been passed in other States, companies hiring sound equipment have , 
in most cases, extended terms throughout Australia which were required in 
New South Wales. 



2487 



-12- 



SOUND- 

1,420 theaters are wired for sound. The construction of new theaters, 
which was very active in 1934 and early 1935, has now slowed down somewhat. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 4,858,102 ft. $112,814 

Negative sound 475,407 ft. $8,394 



1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 4,028,205 ft. $90,703 

Negative sound 890,814 ft. $19,896 



AUSTRIA 



LEGISLATION- 



Note: Cabled advises on February 5, 1937: "Austrian film contingent fees 
increased 25 percent effective February 7, 1937". 
Cabeled despatch of March 23, 1937 "Austrian authorities 
rescind increase in film contingent fee in Decree of February 7." 



The system of issuing "Vormerkscheine" to pay for presentation permits 
issued by the provincial authorities did not change in Austria with regard to 
sound feature films ( "Stammf ilme" ) or sound shorts during the year 1936. Film 
imports and exhibition permits thus remained subject to Vormerkscheine (con- 
tingent) control. To stimulate domestic production, local suppliers of sound- 
film recording apparatus receive as a bonus 10 Vormerkscheine for every Aus- 
trian feature sound film (up to 10) of a specified standard and produced under 
various detailed conditions. If domestic film apparatus is used in the pro- 
duction of sound features, three additional Vormerkscheine are issued. 
Vormerkscheine are allotted for a limited number of shorts. One producer 
only (Selenophon) makes shorts in Austria and at present for 40 percent of 
the shorts released receives from 1 to 3 Vormerkscheine, depending on length 
and type. 

The issuing of Vormerkscheine is based on the condition that the film 
is shown to the Advisory Film Council prior to its first public presentation. 
According to the Basic Regulations Applying to the Film Contingent, Vormerk- 
scheine in appropriate number can be allotted prior to the production of an 
Austrian feature film. 



Domestic sound films of all kinds are granted presentation permits without 
the necessity of submitting Vormerkscheine. For foreign films, except news 
reels, and cultural shorts recognized by the Ministry of Trade and Communica- 
tions and the Ministry of Education, Vormerkscheine (or fractions, depending 
on the type of film) are required in order to receive presentation permits. 



-13- 



Their value in 1935 was fixed at 1,200 schillings. The Vienna Chainber of 
Commerce, Trade, and Industry issues tho.'re permits on authority and recommen- 
dation of the Advisory Film Council (members are appointed by the Minister 
of Trade and Communication) established by basic regulations dated February 1, 
1935. of that Ministry. It also issues Vormerkscheine to suppliers of sound 
apparatus and acts as a clearing house to enable these suppliers or other 
holders to dispose of them to film importers and distributors. The above regu- 
lations all apply to narrow sound films as well. 

Film distributors who import more than 10 features a year are compelled 
by the Film Bureau of the Vienna Chamber of Commerce to purchase one or two 
cultural shorts per year (at 4,150 schillings apiece) for obligatory exhibi- 
tion. When one is taken over it is immediately assigned to a feature film and 
must be shown whenever the feature picture appears on any screen in Austria. 
In case of refusal to comply, exhibition permits for films distributed by 
them will not be granted or if already granted will be withdrawn. Exhibitors 
are also required to show one Austrian official news reel at each performance 
and at controlled rentals. This tends to greatly handicap the presentation 
of this class of foreign shorts. 

Producers of foreign-language versions of Austrian-made feature films 
receive permission for the free presentation of one sound film from the country 
to which the foreign version feature was first sold. This privilege may be in- 
reased if the version in question contains propaganda for travel in Austria. 

The price of permits for the presentation of films of all kinds produced 
in countries which handicap the distribution of Austrian films by import em- 
bargoes, payment restrictions, censor of scenarios, regulations regarding em- 
ployment of actors, etc., can be increased to 1,000 of the normal amount. 
Recourse to this measure has as yet not been taken. 

Three Vormerkscheine are required for any number of copies of foreign 
feature films imported in the German version whether original or dubbed. 

For each copy of a foreign language sound film under 350 meters, 10 pre- 
sentation permits are received for each Vormerkschein; for a film 353 to 700 
meters, 5 permits; for a film 700 to 1,000, 1 permit; 2 Vormerkscheine are 
required for each copy of a film 1,000 to 1,500 meters and 3 Vormerkscheine 
per copy for one over 1,500 meters in length. 

An understood agreement not stated in the law provides that every fifth 
feature imported will have text and titles inserted in Austria, in which case 
and for any other foreign language feature film with German text and titles 
to be inserted in Austria only 1, 1^, and 3 Vormerkscheine are required for 
one, two, or three or more copies, respectively. 



2487 



-14- 



During the 1936 summer season (June 12 to August 13) to encourage better 
programs, the cost of presentation permits for this type of film in one, two, 
and three or more copies was respectively 1,000, 1,500, and 3,000 schillings. 
Vormerkscheine were not needed as a medium of exchange in this transaction. 

Foreign films already exhibited in a version paying a lower license fee 
and later shown in a version subject to a higher fee, are credited with the 
fees already paid. 

A sound film pieced together from various foreign sound films already 
exhibited, is credited with the previously paid fees. 

Distributors who can prove that they have gone to certain expenditures for 
the dubbing or synchronizing of a film in Austria receive two Vormerkscheine. 
Such films are also admitted free of charge for presentation in Austria. 

The Film Bureau is authorized, in case a producer of an Austrian feature 
film sells it at a reasonable price into foreign customs territory, or other- 
wise shows it abroad, to issue as an export premium such number of additional 
Vormerkscheine as is fixed by the Ministry of Commerce. These Vormerkscheine 
remain under control of the Film Bureau and can be used only for obtaining 
permits for films imported from the same foreign customs territory. Use of 
this authority can be made only once for each sound feature film. 

In case of a disparity between Vormerkscheine issued and used, the 
Ministry of Commerce can alter any of the forpgoing regulations, effective 
immediately. 

The Austrian film industry depends, to a large extent, on the German 
market. On the average some 75 percent of production costs of an Austrian 
film are covered by its sale to Germany. Receipts from domestic shov;ings 
cover only 10 to 15 percent of these costs. 

The Austro-German film agreement which has been in force for several 
years and nominally should not expire until July 1939, is now in suspense but 
will probably be continued in some form. Because of exchange and transfer 
difficulties and the expatriate, non-Aryan character of important German 
producers now turning out Austrian films, m.utual quotas have temporarily 
broken dov/n. According to the old agreement, 120 German feature films without 
regard to existing contingents are annually exchangeable against 12 Austrian 
films or at a ratio of 10:1. If either party to the agreement is unable to 
export up to the full number agreed upon, this does not restrict the fixed 
total of the other. For example, if Austria is only able to export 10 features 
during the year in question, Germany is, nevertheless, eligible to ship up to 
120 features to Austria free from contingent encumbrances. All additional 
features beyond the limit set are subject to the ratio of 10 '1, thus, Austria 
in 1936 sent 14 features to Germany and the importation of the two additional 



2487 



-15. 



features was contingent upon the acceptance of 140 features from Germany. The 
exchange of news reels, educational and other short films is also fixed at the 
ratio of 10:1. 

The French trade treaty also provides for the contingent-free import of 
French films. Relatively few, however, are shown in Austria. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Local film censorship was in effect in 1936 for the territory of the 
City of Vienna and in two other provinces. (For fee see "Taxes".) Posters and 
other publicity material is also subject to censorship. Censorship in Vienna 
and in the two provinces of Austria is not handled on a uniform basis and this 
whole question is still awaiting a definite settlement. The other six pro- 
vinces have no local censorship requirements. Federal censorship exists to a 
slight degree and is exercised by the Ministries of Education and of Trade and 
Commerce. The former merely examines on request films for eligibility for 
exhibition to juveniles and the latter Ministry exercises control from the 
political or economic angle through its power to withhold import and exhibi- 
tion permits. Local and Federal censorship in Austria, however, is not rigid 
and is no practical obstacle to the importation of foreign feature films. 
Juveniles under 16 years are admitted only to films bearing the approval of 
the Ministry of Education. In no case can they attend performances finishing 
after 9:00 p.m. 

COMPETITION- 

The six large American film companies distributing in Austria greatly 
improved their position in 1936 from the standpoint of volume and turn-over. 
Profits were scanty, however, owing to the high cost of Vormerkscheine (from 
which German films are exempt) and the necessity of buying one or more ex- 
pensive Austrian "culture" films each year. The share of the market, estimated 
on an earning basis (expressed in percentage) was German 70; American 20; 
all others 10; estimated on a footage basis (including copies), German 55; 
American 35; all others 10. 

Estimated on a basis of the number of films shown, the position of the 
United States for the past 4 years, expressed in percentage of the entire num- 
ber exhibited, is shown in the following table. As it appears, the United 
States has held its own, especially in 1936, whereas German films have lost 
ground to those of other origin, chiefly American. It must be remembered 
that only about half of the American features are released in more than one 
copy and seldom more than three, whereas German features often appear simul- 
taneously in as many as eight prints. While American films are shown in good 
volume, especially in the large first-run houses in Vienna, their profits are 
not great for reasons already mentioned. German films although not greater 



24 8 7 



-16- 



in number, exhibit many more copies throughout Austria — and their overhead 
(no Vormerkscheine required) is much less. 

Country of Percentage, 1933 Percentage, 1934 Percentage, 1935 Percentage 1936* 
Origin Features Sho rts Features Shorts Features Shorts Features Shorts 



UNITED STATES 


37 


31 


37 


33 


40 


28 


46 


26 


Germany 


48 


40 


43 


26 


37 


32 


32 


34 


Austria 


7 


21 


5 


30 


8 


28 


7 


26 


Others 


8 


8 


15 


11 


15 


12 


15 


14 


Total 


100 


100 


100 


100 


100 


100 


100 


100 


*Note: Based 


on 10 


months' fig 


ures , 
















Austrian 


Exhibits 


of 


Sound Films 











No. of 


feature films (10 


mos ) 


No. of 


short films 


(10 


mos . ) 


Country of origin 


1932 


1953 


1934 


1935 


1936 


1932 


1933 


1934 


1935 


1936 


Austria 


10 


17 


14 


27 


18 


75 


112 


155 


155 


139 


UNITED STATES 


72 


92 


110 


126 


128 


250 


163 


173 


159 


135 


Denmark 


1 




2 


1 












1 


Germany 


166 


119 


129 


116 


88 


243 


203 


140 


181 


178 


England 




2 


13 


13 


9 


9 


15 


13 


6 


3 


France 


15 


3 


13 


6 


15 


5 


23 


42 


55 


55 


Italy 


4 


3 




3 


3 


8 






1 


4 


Poland 




2 


















Russia 


2 




2 


1 




1 


1 








Sweden 






1 




1 












Switzerland 






1 




1 


1 


2 




3 


8 


Czechoslovakia 


3 


5 


9 


11 


7 


1 




2 


3 


1 


Hungary 




4 


5 


3 


7 




1 






3 


Other countries 


3 


2 




6 


1 


1 


1 


2 




2 


Total 


277 


249 


299 


313 


278 


594 


521 


527 


563 


521 


The regulations for 


the 


control 


of 


f oreig 


;n exchange 


have been ; 


grealy 



relaxed and no difficulty is experienced in securing the necessary valuta. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Established by governmental decree of September 20, 1907; April 9, 1910; 
March 11, 1925, and December 19, 1929. The draft of a new copyright law is 
now under discussion. (The new copyright law was promulgated on April 9, 1936, 
Federal Gazette No. 24, Decree No. Ill, A. U. ) 



2487 



-17- 



PRODUCTION- 

During 1936 (10 months) the Austrian film industry produced 19 feature 
sound films and 10 short sound films, compared to 23 and 15 in all 1935, 16 and 
155 in 1934, and 15 and 87 in 1933. 

Little progress was made in the contemplated establishment of an institu- 
tion to finance the production of Austrian films, but conferences have com- 
menced with German and Austrian (bank) capital under consideration. 

TAXES- 

The tariff on sound films is 120 gold crowns ($40.70 at current rate) per 
quintal, plus 4 percent of duty-paid c.i.f, invoice value. 

(1) Local censors' fee - 50 schillings ($9.25) per 1,000 meters, but not 
more than 100 schillings per film. Fee for Federal approval is 3 groschen per 
meter plus government stamps. 

(2) Amusement ( "Lustbarkeits" ) tax - 4 to 20 percent of gross receipts, 
depending on seating capacity and class of house. This tax has not been 
changed since December 15, 1933. Films reviewed and passed by the Ministry of 
Education and cultural shorts recognized as such by that Ministry in most of 
Austria enjoy a reduction of this tax, varying according to the classification 
the film has received. In Lower-Austria and Carinthia the amusement tax is 
entirely eliminated, in six other provinces it is reduced but in Vienna no 
reduction in the tax is made for films in these two categories. 

(3) Owner or lessee pays usual taxes on earning and personal income, 
also various Federal or Municipal public welfare taxes (unemployment fund, 
insurance of employees against illness or accident, pension fund, etc.). 

(4) For price of Vormerkscheine, compulsory purchase of cultural shorts, 
etc . , see text . 

THEATERS- 

Estimated total 765 in Austria. 

Detailed figures on the number of moving picture theaters in the nine 
provinces of Austria are given in the table below: 

P rovinc e Sound Sil ent Total 



Vienna 


176 


2 


178 


Lower Austria 


271 


22 


293 


Upper Austria 


71 


16 


87 


Styria 


62 


10 


72 



2487 



-18- 



Province S ound Silent Total 



Carinthia 


26 


7 


33 


Salzburg 


20 


6 


26 


Tirol 


19 


3 


22 


Vorarlberg 


11 


1 


12 


Burgenland 


36 


6 


42 


Total 


692 


73 


765 



SOUND- 

The re are 692 theaters wired for sound. Of these 692 theaters, 271 are in 
Lower-Austria, 176 in Vienna, and the remainder, 245. in other provinces of 
Austria. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Postive sound 2,056,661 ft. $42,207 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 1,520,842 ft. $30,471 

Negative sound 19,174 ft. $1,917 

BAHAMAS 

LEGISLATION- 

There appears to be no agitation against the exhibition of American motion 
pictures . 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Commandant of Police has charge of the censorship of motion picture 
films. Mo gangster films are permitted to be shown. The Cinematograph Act of 
1912 (Bahamas Laws, Chapter 112) forbids the presentation or exhibition by 
means of a cinematograph or other similar apparatus, of "any picture, drawing, 
print, film, or representation of any kind, of a treasonable, seditious, pro- 
fane, blasphemous, immoral, indecent, or obscene character." 

COMPETITION- 

Of the films shov/n in the Bahamas, 90 percent are of American production, 
the remaining 10 percent being British. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Samo as the United Kingdom. 



2487 



-19- 



PRODUCTION- 

There is no production whatever. 
TAXES- 

Are considered moderate. 
THEATERS- 

Five motion picture theaters are operated in the Bahamas. 

SOUND- 

All five theaters are wired for sound. 

BARBADOS 

LEGISLATION- 

On January 1, 1936, there was put into effect a compulsory British exhi- 
bition quota of 20 percent on features and 50 percent on news reels, the former 
increasing in the second year to 25 percent. Because of British and other 
foreign films, not being available, the American importations were not affected 
and consequently increased. 

CENSORSHIP- 

There are no censorship laws in Barbados. However, there is an Act 
which requires the appointment of censors fully authorized to reject or change 
any film received on this market, and, furthermore, their decision can not be 
questioned or repealed. Local censorship is not considered as being strict, 
and while a considerable portion of the films shown here receive "cuts" it 
is believed such action is beneficial. 

CCMPETITION- 

Of all the films shown, 95 percent are of American ma'/.e. 
CCPYRI^HT RELATIONS- 

Same as United Kingdom. 
PRODUCTION- 

There is no production of motion pictures in Barbados. 

2487 



-20- 



TAXES- 

There is no admission tax. A Parochial Trad-e Tax of 8.5 percent on net 
profits and a Colonial income tax on net profits amounting to 2/6 on the pound 
are levied. These taxes may vary slightly from year to year, being fixed by 
the appropriate bodies. 

THEATERS- 

There are at present 3 theaters in Barbados, all of which are wired for 
sound. The combined seating capacity of these theaters is 1,987. The average 
range of motion picture admission prices is from 12 to 48 cents for first-run 
theaters and from 6 to 24 cents in the second-run houses. The average motion 
picture program consists of a short news reel, comedy, and a feature. One 
theater, however, shows double feature programs on week ends. Two theaters 
change programs three times a week while the third theater changes its pro- 
grams twice a week. The favorite type of film are those of a musical comedy 
nature. Next in importance are heavy dramas and comedies. 

SOUND- 

Three theaters are wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound- 9,597 ft. $144 
Negative sound 

BELGIUM 

LEGISLATION- 

The serious agitation for local synchronization of foreign pictures 
imported into the territory has abated, since the various organizations which 
at one time during 1935 were active for governmental intervention in behalf of 
the Belgian studios failed to establish their demands, and later disagreed 
among themselves as to the plan of operation for "dubbing". The result has 
been the disorganization of former syndicates. At the moment the American 
distributors are cooperating with a union of local exhibitors, producers, and 
other importers and distributors, while refusing to unite with them in a 
single corporate body. Pressure may eventually be brought to bear to create 
a single organization embracing all aspects of the Belgian cinema. For the 
time being, local synchronization has lost its importance as a central issue. 



2437 



-21- 



CENSCR^-HIP- 

The only censorship to v.hich a picture is subaitted in Pelgiua is the 
"CoEimission de Controle" v;hich decides whether a film can be played, and v.he- 
ther children are to be admitted. This formality is not obligatory, and if a 
distributor does not care to have his picture approved for projection before 
children under 16 years of age, he has the right not to present it at all 
before the said commissicn. During the 1S35-36 season, 473 sound filES were 
released . 

Outstanding episodes in scenes to which the Belgian control takes excep- 
tion are gun play, gambling, kidnaping, extortion, and intimidation. There- 
fore the attitude of the committee of control toward Wild T^est pictures is 
usually to order them so cut as to destroy the continuity and make films which 
were successfully exhibited in the United States less appealing in Belgium. 

COMPETITICN- 

For sound films it is necessary to divide the country into three parts 
in relation to the language spoken: 



A mericsn German Fre nch Othe rs 



Flemish-speaking area 


IS? 


64 


52 


49 


French-speaking area 


134 


32 


103 


22 


Brussels 


164 


32 


103 


35 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Established by Presidential Proclamation on July 1, 1891, extended 
April 9, 1910, and July 14, 1911. 

production- 
Two sound films in Flemish; three sound films in French were produced 
during the 1S35-35 season. 

TAXES- 

Taxes levied on the price of seats in cinemas at present are as follows: 

(a) Establishments where the admission price has not exceeded 8 francs 
during the fortnight collection period taken into consideration: 

Seats not exceeding 4 frs,, 4% plus 10^ of 4% crisis tax plus 25| of 4% 
town tax, 5.40^. 



2487 



-22- 



Seats between 4 and 5 frs.. 6% plus 10% of 6% crisis tax plus 25% of 6% 
town tax, 8.10%. 

Seats between 5 and 8 frs., 10% plus 20% of 10% crisis tax plus 25% of 10% 
town tax, 14.50%. 

(b) Establishments where the admission price exceeds 8 francs: 

Seats up to 5 frs., 6% plus 10% of 6% crisis tax plus 25% of 6% town tax, 
8. 10%. 

Between 5 and 8 frs., 10% plus 20% of 10% crisis tax plus 25% of 10% 
town tax, 14.50%. 

Between 8 and 12 frs., 12% plus 30% of 12% crisis tax plus 25% of 12% 
town tax, 18.60%. 

Above 12 frs., 15% plus 30% of 15% crisis tax plus 25% of 15% town tax, 
23.25%. 



Number to date, approximately 800. 

The character of business has not improved much since last year. Nego- 
tiations for commitments are still very difficult, due to exhibitors being 
very cautious and unwilling to engage themselves for a long period, as they 
do not know what the general situation of the Belgian market will be during 
the coming months. This situation is due to political rather than economic 
uncertainty. 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



Approximately 740 theaters are wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,459,347 ft. 
70,392 ft. 



$45,227 
$4,383 



1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



1.904,830 ft. 
1,728 ft. 



$35,800 
$107 



2487 



-23- 



BERMUDA 

LEGISLATION- 

None detrimental to American films. 
CENSORSHIP- 

There are few censorship regulations in Bermuda, and such regulations as 
do exist are purely voluntary between the manager of the theater company and 
the Board of Education. If there is any feeling on the part of the management 
that objections might be found with any picture, members of the Board of Edu- 
cation and the Clergy of the Colony are invited to see the picture at a private 
showing. 

COMPETITION- 

There were 174 pictures contracted for during the year 193S; of these, 
150 were American and 24 were British films. American films are popular in 
the Colony, both with the local population and with American and Canadian 
visitors, and it is believed that in the future only British films of excep- 
tional quality will be used. In 1935 the total number of films shown was 160, 
of which 36 were British. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Same as United Kingdom. 

PRODUCTION- 

There are no film studios in the Colony nor is it likely that any import- 
ant number of pictures will ever be produced here. On rare occasions portions 
of American films are made here. 

TAXES- 

No amusement taxes are levied in the Colony by the Bermuda Government. 

Motion picture films, excluding undeveloped films of British origin, are 
subject to an import duty of 1 pence, approximately 2 cents, per 100 feet. 
Films not of British origin are subject to an import duty of 6 pence, approx- 
imately 12 cents, per 100 feet, plus a surtax of 25 percent. 

THEATERS- 

At the present time there are but two important theaters in the Colony 



2489 



-24- 



and both are located in Hamilton, where shows are given nightly except Sun- 
days. At Somerset and St. George's three shows weekly are given, and weekly 
shows are given at Bailey's Bay, Prospect, the Dockyard, and Southampton, a 
total of eight houses throughout the Colony. The houses in the City of Hamil- 
ton have a seating capacity of 385 and 400. The seating capacity at St. George's 
is 325, at Somerset 325, at Bailey's Bay 250, at Dockyard 200 and at Somerset 
325. Admission prices have remained unchanged for several years, and range 
from 25 cents to 75 cents per person, with 50 cents being the regular price for 
admission to evening shows. Prices for matinees are 25 cents and 35 cents per 
person. A price of 75 cents per person is occasionally charged for special 
pictures. 

SOUND- 

Eight theaters are wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 1,988,304 ft. $38,839 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 1,507,024 ft. $30,562 
Negative sound 

BOLIVIA 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no definite legislation imposed against motion pictures. The 
only restriction is that of transmitting funds abroad. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Government Decree of February 22, 1926, forbids admittance of children 
under 12 years to picture houses on week days. Censorship is executed by the 
various municipalities from moral, religious, and political standpoints, but 
it is not strict. Ten pictures were refused release in 1934. These were war 
pictures and most of them have since been released. 

COMPETITION- 

The films shown are 98 percent American. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There are no copyright relations with the United States. 

2487 



-25- 



PRODUCTION- 



No films were produced during 1936. There are no studios in Bolivia. 



In Bolivia there are the following national taxes collected in all parts 
of the country; 10 percent of gross receipts; stamp tax of from Bs. 0.02 to 
Bs. 2.50 per ticket according to price. In La Paz there is a 4 percent muni- 
cipal tax. a municipal tax on outdoor advertisements, an annual municipal 
license tax of Bs. 2,000 for first-class theaters, and Bs. 1,000 for second- 
class theaters. In the other principal cities of the country, there are, in 
addition to national taxes, departmental taxes of from 6 to 10 percent of 
gross receipts and annual municipal license taxes of from Bs . 1,000 to Bs . 



There are 19 theaters in Bolivia. Three in La Paz, two in Sucre, one in 
Cochabambo and one in Oruro may be considered relatively important. 

Admission prices range between Bs. 2.50 and Bs . 3.00. Very rarely prices 
reach Bs. 4.00 for outstanding films. Sometimes prices are reduced to Bs . 
1.00 for films that have been already shown several times. The usual program 
consists of a news reel, comedy, and feature picture. Theaters in La Paz 
offer one new film weekly which is generally exhibited about three times during 
the week. All other exnibitions are shown about three times during the week. 
All other exhibitions during the week are films that have been previously 
shown. Films preferred by the natives are musical comedies, sensationals, 
and thrillers. There is no special preference to nationality of stars and 
films in the Spanish language would probably be preferred, but exhibitions of 
pictures in this language are very few. English-language films enjoy a great 
preference over European-language films that have been shown. 

SOUND- 

There are 19 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



1 ,500. 



THEATERS- 



1935 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



6,021 ft. 



$120 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



81.299 ft. 



$1,163 



2487 



-26- 



BRAZIL 

LEGISLATION- 

The law requiring exhibitors to show a minimum of 100 meters (323 'fee^t-)- 
of domestic film with each program continued to s-astain the 30-odd producers 
of news -.'sels and short subjects. The actior^ of the Federal Governnont in 
offering an annual cash 'premium for the best picture cf this type produced has 
done much to improve the quality of domestic shorts. Despite this, however, 
the majority of these are technically poor and audiences continue to regard 
them as a necessary evil. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Brazilian censorship laws are regarded as reasonable, and their applica- 
tion appears to be uniformly fair throughout the entire country. Decree No. 
21240 of April 4, 1S32, sets forth justifiable reasons for the whole or partial 
rejection of a picture by the Board of Censors: (1) Offense to public 
decency; (2) suggestive of crime or other unconventional acts; (3) conveying 
illusions which mi^ht prove prejudicial to international relations; (4) 
insulting to race, collective groups, or religious sects; (5) offensive to 
National dignity or provocative of defiance to public order. Less than one- 
half of 1 percent of the 1,133,420 meters of film censored during the first 9 
months of 1935 was rejected. 

During the 10 months from January to October of 1936 a total of 1,215,574 
meters (3,839,561 feet) of film was submitted for censorship, of which only 
10,700 meters (34,325 feet) or less than 1 percent was rejected by the censors. 

COMPETITION- 

According to the records of the Federal Censorship Bureau of the Ministry 
of Justice, 86 percent of all the feature length pictures submitted for censor- 
ship during 10 months of 1S36 were of American origin. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Protection is afforded titles which have been duly registered with the 
Censorship Board of the Ministry of Justice. - - 

PRODUCTION- 

During 1936 a total of 231,000 feet of motion pictures were produced in 
this country at an approximate cost of $75,000. Of this footage 43,000 feet 
represented seven feature lengtli sound pictures, while the balance (182,000 
feet) consisted of 530 news reels and short subjects with sound accompaniment, 
ranging in length from 330 feet to 430 feet. 



2487 



-27- 



Although it may be said that some advancement was made by domestic pro- 
ducers during the year, locally made feature pictu'-es are not regarded as a 
competitive factor and, being inferior to foreign pictures, their appeal is 
largely regional. 



THEATERS- 



According to the latest estimates of several of the larger film distri- 
butors, there was a total of 1,400 motion picture houses in Brazil at the close 
of 1936 of which only 30 are currently dark. Brazil's tv/o leading cities, 
i.e., Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo have 90 and 60 houses, respectively, cur- 
rently in operation. 



SOUND- 



According to latest estimates, 1,170 theaters are wired for sound, leaving 

only 230 houses, the majority of which are located in the interior, showing 

silent pictures. The aggregate seating capacity of Brazilian motion picture 
theaters is in excess of 645,000 seats. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 11,491,663 ft. 1244,397 

Negative sound 77.006 ft. $2,728 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 10,408,169 ft. $202,433 

Negative sound 21,531 ft. $506 



BRITISH MALAYA 



LEGISLATION- 



The agitation for more British films which was evidenced in past years has 
almost completely died out. The wave of sentiment noticeable among Britishers 
here is now for quality films, and British films are subjected to the same 
degree of criticism as those manufactured in any other country. Films earning 
the largest gross revenue during 1936 have been American. Generally speaking, 
British films do not appeal to the native audiences, especially the Chinese, 
and theater owners seem willing to forego flag-waving when it adversely af- 
fects the box-office receipts. 



There has been a general improvement in the class of British films shown 
during 1936, and some of them have attracted large audiences. British pro- 
ducers continue to sell their films on a fixed license fee plus cost of 
printing of the positive film. They have not as yet adopted a policy of 
selling their film on a basis which takes into consideration gross earnings 
of the film in the territory. 
2487 



-28- 



CENSORSHIP- 

The local censor is sure to cut or ban any film which reflects on the 
prestige of the white race. Murder, gangster, excessive gun play, false in- 
prisoninent, or gruesome films are banned. In films that cover certain periods 
or costume plays the objections are relaxed to a certain extent but are prac- 
tically all barred in modern themes. 

There has been no change in the censor's fees, for the year on newly im- 
ported films of 100 feet, silent or sound; the charge is S$1.20. Copies, pro- 
vided the original has been censored, 30 (Straits) cents per 100 feet. For an 
appeal, after banning by the censor, the charge is S$1.00. If the appeal is 
approved the reviewing fee for the whole film is S$10. If the Appeal Board 
sustains the censor's ban the charge is S$10 per reel for the first five 
reels and S$5 per subsequent reel. 

Of the Chinese films, those in Cantonese dialects are the best revenue 
makers. Films in the Kokien and National language (Kuo-U) are not as popular 
as they once were. This is probably because the production of pictures in 
those dialects is irregular. 

Of the Indian films, those in the Tamil language are the most popular, 
followed by those in Hindustani. The majority of the Indians in British Malaya 
are of Tamil and Hindustani extraction. 

Indian films are severely criticized for adapting an Indian story along 
American lines. At times they duplicate American scenes but cheapen the pro- 
duct. It is generally believed that the Indian films would be more successful 
if they would use their own historical background for themes and discontinue 
to imitate the American. 

From a standpoint of making money, where the cast does not affect the 
story, the light comedy produces more money and appeals to more people than any 
other type. However, Malayan audiences are very partial to their favorite 
actor or actress and will attend any production in which they appear. The 
historical dramas shown here have been ';he largest revenue producers but the 
number of films in this category has been limited. 

For a long time, musical films had a good appeal to local audiences, but 
unless the picture is almost totally, different than the ordinary run of the 
mill musical show, they fail to make big money. 

During the year 1936, there was a noticeable decrease in attendance 
at animal pictures which were very popular at one time. The public seems to 
have had enough of this type of picture for the time being. Society dramas 
have no appeal beyond the European and Eurasian audiences. Detective stories 
only draw fair audiences, with the possible exception of Charlie Chan. The 
success of the Charlie Chan pictures is due to the build-up of the leading 



248 7 



-29- 



man . Aviation pictures are only mildly popular, and this type of picture 
makes less money than the average type. 

COMETITION- 

During the first 10 months of 1936, the Official Censor of Cinematograph 
Films of the S. S., F, M. S., and Jehore reviewed 4,183,600 feet of film, of 
which 2,555,000 feet was American film, as against 3.319,500 feet, during the 
first 9 months of 1935. During 1936, 61 percent of the films reviewed by the 
censor during the first 10 months was American as compared to 71-6/10 percent 
for the first 9 months of 1935. 

G'-eat B'-itain supplied 626,500 feet, China 785,000 feet, British topical 
157,000, and other countries 59,200 feet to British Malaya during the first 10 
months of 1936. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Practically the same as United Kingdom. 

They are protected under an ordinance known as the Merchandise Marks Act. 
It is considered sufficient protection to the ovmer to publish a declaration of 
ownership in the local newspapers. 

PRODUCTION- 

Other than some wild arimal and native life pictures made in Borueo, no 
pictures were produced. 

TAXE3- 

There is no taxation on theaters in Malaya. The police, however, have a 
license fee according to seating capacity. In Malaya for cinema performances, 
if the theater seats less than 200 people, the fee is S%2 per perfomance; 
seating not less than 2 39 people, S$Z per performance; seating not more than 
399 people S$4 per performance; seating 400 people and over, S$5 per per- 
formance. For second and subsequent performances on the same day, half of the 
above fees is charged. 

THEATERS- 

There were 122 theaters operating in British Malaya during 1936. 

During the year two new theaters were opened in Kuala Lumpur and one in 
Butterworth. A new theater is under construction at Ipeh and two open ai^" 
theaters have secured permission of the Municipality of Singapore to operate. 
It is generally believed, however, that only one of these open air heaters 
will materialize. 



2487 



■30. 



Economic conditions of the masses in British Malaya are continuing to 
improve. This condition has been reflected with increased box office receipts 
from most theaters and the outlook for 1937 is brighter than it has been for 
some years. There is no reason why American films should not continue to 
dominate the market. 

Singapore is the distribution center of practically all films shown in 
British Malaya. All of the leading American film companies have representa- 
tives or agents located in Singapore. 

SOUND- 

There are 96 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 2,637,960 ft. $56,004 

Negative sound 20,560 ft. $374 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 2,344,119 ft. $49,471 
Negative sound 

CEYLON 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no quotas or other restrictions affecting the importation of 
cinematograph films other than the preferential import duty which is two-thirds 
of 1 rupee cent per foot in the case of films of British origin and 1 rupee 
cent per foot for films of foreign origin. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Films shown in Ceylon practically all come from India where they have 
been censored. Police have general control of all public performances. Appeal 
could be made against the decision of the police to the Mayor of Colombo, 
against whose decision the final authority is the Minister of Local Adminis- 
tration. Indian authorities inform Ceylon censors of all films they reject 
and the managers of cinemas are informed that such films would not be allowed 
in Ceylon. 

COMPETITION- 

The films shown are 60 percent American. 



2487 



- -3-1- 



COPYRIGHT RELATI0N3- 

Same as in Great Britain. 
PRODUCTION- 

None . 
TAXES- 

There are no amusement taxes in force in Ceylon. However, exhibitors 
are obliged to pay a yearly assessment tax based on the seating capacity of the 
theater . 

THEATERS- 

There are 18 theaters, of which only 13 show regularly, the others being 
practically closed down or show at irreg-olar intervals. 

Eight theaters are located in Colombo, two in Kandy, and one each in 
Nuwara Eliya, Jaffna, ard Galle. Three of the eight theaters located in Col- 
ombo exhibit, almost exclusively, Indian films in the Tamil, Hindustani, and 
Qjjerati languages. In addition, there are several theaters throughout Ceylon 
which occasionally exhibit silent pictures. 

The price of admission to the principal motion picture theaters varies 
from 50 rupee cents ($0.18) to Rs. 3.00 ($1.14). 

SOUKD- 

There are 14 theaters wired for sound. 

i:-5P0RTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 86,500 ft. $1,150 

Negative sound 

1S36 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 

CHILE 

LEGISLATION- 

To date, there has been no legislation introduced for quota restrictions 
on imports of American films. The continued control of exchange opei'ations 
during the past year has made the importation of foreign films, most of which 



41.034 ft. $1,241 



2487 



are supplied by the United States, difficult. During the latter part of the 
year motion picture films v/ere classified as luxuries, for which only gold 
exchange, at the rate of 35-00 pesos to the dollar as compared to the export 
draft rate of approximately 26.00 pesos, could be used. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Censorship Board is considered very liberal in passing on films. The 
representatives of one American film company advises that during the last five 
years cnly two of their films have been censored and not permitted to be shown 
in the country, one for moral, the other for political reasons. This board 
seems to be most concerned with films which might cause disturbances by political 
e lements . 

Each film when passed by the board is classified as follows: (1) Suit- 
able for children; (2) Suitable for children over 15 years old, and (3) Kot 
recommended for young girls. If a film is not approved for children, minors 
under fifteen years can not be admitted to the theaters when such films are 
being shown and this rule is quite strictly adhered to. 

The censorship fee is 140 pesos for each feature picture and, in the Muni- 
cipalities of Santiago, Valparaiso and Concepcion, there is a charge of 40 
pesos for the first showing of a film. It is left to each municipality to 
determine the amount of this fee. 

In connection with censorship, according to Decree Law 558 of September 
26, 1925. 20 pesos of each fee go to the National Library for the purchase of 
books for its children's section and 20 pesos to a fund for children's play- 
grounds and popular theaters. Considerable publicity has been given by the 
press in recent months to the construction of a children's theater in Santiago, 
to cost approximately 100,000 pesos. While the Municipality has given its 
approval to the construction of such a theater, lack of funds will probably 
prevent any definite action for some time. 

CCMPETITION- 

While by far the greatest percentage of films is still imported from the 
United States, during the past year this percentage showed a decrease over pre- 
vious years, distribution being estimated as follows: 



German 



Argentine 
Spanish.... 



American 



French 



British 



S0% 

5% 

2% 
. 5% 



2457 



-33- 



It seems rather a paradox that Spanish language talkies have never been 
successful in Chile, the general preference being for talking pictures in 
English with superimposed sub-titles. However, just recently there was an 
article on the editorial page of the chief Santiago daily, criticizing such 
titles very harshly and saying that they were most irritating to a person of 
culture since they reflect the spirit of the pictures so inadequately and use 
such poor phrasing and bad grammar. The article stated that since the His 
panic-American film market was such a large and important one, the public 
could very well demand a much higher quality in these titles. 

The types of pictures preferred vary in different sections. Musical pro- 
ductions and society plays are more popular in the down town theaters of the 
three chief Chilean cities whereas the neighborhood houses and the more popu- 
lar type of theater prefer adventure films. Least popular are those pictures 
in a foreign language with a great deal of conversation. We are informed 
that a high class picture shown successfully in any of the down town theaters 
in Santiago will often be an absolute failure in the neighborhood houses. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There has been no change in the copyright law within the past year. 
Decree Law No. 345 of March 17, 1925 still applies. 

PRODUCTION- 

As there is no national production, if we except a few shorts of Chilean 
scenes and industries made under Governrr:ent auspices, the industry is entirely 
dependent on imported films. 

TAXES- 

Municipal taxes vary according to the location and the classification of 
the theater. Decree law 245 of May 15, 1931, established a scale of fees, 
ranging from 100 to 1,200 pesos per annum for theaters, motion picture houses, 
etc. These fees were increased 15 percent in 1S36. The municipal license fee 
charged film distributing organizations is high, amounting in the case of one 
well knov/n American film company to 3,025 pesos per annum. There are also 
charges for posters and electric signs. 

Government taxes include an admission tax of 10 percent; income tax of the 
third category according to which 6 percent is paid on an income of less than 
10,000 pesos; S percent on income between 10,000 and 50,000 pesos and 10 per- 
cent on income over 50,000 pesos, and a sales tax of 2| percent on net income. 



2487 



-34- 



THEATERS- 

According to data published in the Anuario Cinematografico early in 1336, 
there were 208 theaters operating i; Chile, sirce which time six more have beea 
placed in operation in Santiago. 

Motion pictures are very popular in Chile and this is especially true of 
Santiago where there are many modern theaters, six having been inaugurated 
during the past year with a seating capacity of 14,184 and several more being 
in process of construction. This popularity extends through all classes. 
During the winter, the afternoon program which usually begins at 6:30 is in 
the nature of a social function whereas the large number of theaters erected 
within the last few years in thickly populated sections of the city, having 
the majority of their seats in the gallery, is evidence of the increase in 
favor with the poorer classes of this kind of entertainment. 

SOUND- 

Of these 214 theaters, approximately 189 are wired for sound. Santiago 
new has 58, all wired; Valparaiso 15, all wired except 1; Vina del Mar. 5, 
all wired. About 70 of these sound installations were locally assembled while 
approximately 84 were supplied by two American manufacturers, the remainder 
being divided among other American and European manufacturers. 

IMPORTS FROM UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 3,676,243 ft. $117,528 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 3,242,447 $131,331 

Negative sound 15,302 450 

CHINA 

LEGISLATION- 

The feeling continues with increasing intensity that at times American 
pictures depict the Chinese in an unfavorable manner. It has been noted, how- 
ei^er, that for some time past American producers have become increasingly 
aware of this situation, not only in China, but in foreign countries in gen- 
eral, and are endeavoring to avoid situations or dialogue that could be con- 
strued as disparaging to the peoples of other nations. China offers big po- 
tentialities for American films and intelligent consideration should be given 
to the market's expansion possibilities. Writers and producers when dealing 



2487 



-35- 



with things Chinese should bear in mind the Chinese point of view and thereby 
avoid censure, gain increased revenue, and add to the prestige and desirabil- 
ity of American films in China. 

CENSCRSHIP- 

The liquidation of the Kwangtung independent provincial regime during 
1936, and the amalgaication of this important area with that of the National 
Government had a direct effect upon the censorship requirements formerly en- 
forced at Canton. Prior to the direct control of this area by the National 
Government, Canton demanded a censorship fee in addition to the fee levied by 
the Central Motion Picture Censorship Board in Nanking. This Canton require- 
ment was in complete disregard to instructions issued by the Nanking authori- 
ties which stated that all films passed by the Central Motion Picture Censor- 
ship Board were free from further provincial censorship in China. Upon the 
fall of this independent political regime in July, the Canton Censorship Board 
was abolished and all motion pictures have since been relieved of this local 
administration. In addition to Nanking censorship, local censorship at no 
additional charge is enforced in the International Settlement and French Con- 
cession at Shanghai; separate certificates are necessary for the British Crown 
Colony of Hong Kong for which a nominal charge is made, while films entering 
Manchuria (as distinguished from the South Manchuria Railway Zone) must first 
pass the censorship of the Department of Civil Affairs at Hsinking (formerly 
known as Changchun) . Films entering the South Manchuria Railv/ay Zone are 
charged a nominal inspection fee by the Dairen police which permits their 
exhibition throughout this entire area without further censoring. 

When feature motion pictures imported from abroad are submitted to the 
Censorship Board at Nanking for inspection, they must be accompanied by 20 
printed copies of an English-Chinese translation of the story, its dialog and 
action, as well as a table of contents of each separate reel; 10 printed 
copies of the dialog and action as translated for the title slides that will 
subsequently be made and used m conjunction with the actual showing of the 
film or be subsequently engraved on the emulsion of the film itself, and 4 
complete copies of the foreign language continuity detailing the dialog and 
action. Shorts and news reels require 16 printed copies of a Chinese trans- 
lation of the dialog, titles, and action, while trailers require 8 copies. All 
of the above printed matter, with the exception of the foreign language con- 
tinuities which are generally made up in the country of origin, must be printed 
on special forms authorized by the Censor Board and at the expense of the 
distributor. The censorship fee levied by the Nanking authorities is yuan 
20.00 per 500 meters or fraction thereof. After the Board's approval, a li- 
cense and tax fee amounting to yuan 3,10 is charged per subject. Stronger 
measures have recently been adopted whereby the prints of all foreign motion 
pictures imported into China and deemed derogatory to the nation by the Central 
Film Censorship Board will be confiscated. In addition to this, there are 
strong possibilities that efforts will be made to have every motion picture 



2487 



-36- 



that has been judged derogatory to China confiscated and destroyed, exhibited 
neither in China nor anywhere abroad. It is said that any producer refusing tr 
comply will find his product banned from China permanently. 

COMPETITION- 

Approximately 80 percent of the films exhibited in China are American 
films. This represents an increase of approximately 2 percent when compared 
with the 1935 estimates. During the first 6 months of 1936, the business of 
American film distributors in China rose approximately 35 percent when compared 
with the business done during the corresponding period in 1935. This level, 
however, was not maintained during the last half of the year as witnessed by 
the fact that box-office receipts, contract renewals, and the distribution 
business in general dropped for the majority of the companies to the 1935 level 
and in some instances even below. 

This decline in revenue is mainly attributed to political distrubances 
in the North and to the unsettled conditions that obrained during the liquida- 
tion of the Kwantung independent provincial regime in the South, together with 
the distinct increase witnessed in the popularity, quality, and distribution of 
Chinese pictures which has chiefly been accomplished through Government pro- 
motional activities instigated to stimulate and foster this Chinese industry. 

Despite further efforts of European producers to favorably establish 
their product in China, American pictures continued to maintain their strong 
position in this market. This is due in no small degree to the ably directed 
distributional organizatilns handling the products of the major companies in 
China, together with the skill and technical resources maintained by the 
studios in the United States. Definite improvement has been made by most of 
the major studios in that they now allow their China representative to select 
pictures, from their respective company's program, which would be most suit- 
able for release in China. Formerly this system was not so generally adopted 
and many of the films that were imported met with mediocre receipts or ran into 
censorship difficulties with its attendant red tape when such might have been 
avoided had the selection been left to the judgment of local representatives. 

The gain noted during 1935 in the release of British pictures in China 
did not continue during 1936, and it is believed that in most cases financial 
loss was the result of these further attempts to popularize the British pro- 
duct. Occasionally outstanding productions of the British studios are shown 
and have met with varying degrees of success, but the average program pic- 
tures of these companies have not been popular with theater managers. 

Films of action and adventure, melodrama, comedy, and musicals continue 
to be most generally liked by the Chinese. Pictures of the "gangster" type are 
steadily losing their box-office value, while historical epics, light comedy, 
musicals, and stories with a sentimental appeal are becoming increasingly pop- 
ular in both the large coastal cities and those of smaller size in the interior. 



2487 



Westerns or "horse operas" have lost considerable ground and their future 
value to distributors in the China field is doubtful except in the case of smash 
hits. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

United States Commercial Treaty of October 8, 1903, provides for re- 
ciprocal protection. 

PRODUCTION- 

Inasmuch as this resume has been prepared before the end of the year, 
exact figures on the number of Chinese pictures produced during 19.36 are not 
yet available. Estimates gathered from Chinese producers and distributors in 
Shanghai and Canton, the two principal centers of production, reveal that 
during the year the transition from silent to sound films, which was generally 
begun in 1934 and 1935, has now been practically completed. In 1935 there 
were approximately 12 silent features and 34 sound features produced in the 
Shanghai studios, while reports from Canton show that there were approximately 
30 sound features (Cantonese dialect) and only several silent film's produced,' 
thus making a total of approximately 64 feature sound films and about 16 
silent for that year. Incomplete returns for 1936 from Shanghai studios show 
that approximately 43 to 50 sound features will have been produced and only 
several silent films. Production figures for Canton for 1936 are unavailable 
at this time, but it is believed they will correspond to the producton in- 
crease witnessed in the Shanghai studios during the year. 

One of the interesting developments in 1936, and which is directly a 
result of the liquidation of the Kwantung independent provincial regime, is 
that the Cantonese dialect for picture purposes is definitely discouraged. 
It is believed that high officials cf the Central Publicity Committee in Nan- 
king have decreed that the use of dialects otlier than Mandarin, the national 
language, will be prohibited in domestically produced motion pictures. How- 
ever, all motion pictures with Cantonese ' dialog now- in circulation will be 
allowed to continue showing in Kwangtung and Kwangsi, but pictures now under 
production and using the Cantonese dialect must be completed and censored at 
Nanking within 2 months (ending about December 31) and from then on, no pic- 
ture with such dialog may be produced. 

Chinese studios were not active during the first half of 1936, but pro- 
duction increased noticeably during the latter half partly as a result of 
government promotional activities instigated to create interest in domestically 
produced pictures which have had emphasis placed on more modern methods of 
technique. Films having a patriotic appeal have been especially sucessful 
during the yea'". Principal improvements for 1936 in the industry are: (1) 
I.icreased efforts to modernize studio equipment, (2) condensation of story 
plots, (3) quality of photography, (4) construction of sets and set dress- 
ing, and (5) advertising. There is still, however, much room for improvement 



2487 



-38- 



in such departments as financial and business management, direction, recording, 
dubbing, special effects, editing, and laboratory work. Much of this im- 
provement, of course, depends upon the installation of proper equipment and 
facilities for training technicians in its use. 

Definite advances have also been made in educational motion pictures 
during the year. The Ministry of Education has put into execution a plan 
which has three main objectives (1) to use educational films to supplement 
teaching in the primary and secondary schools, (2) to import common knowl- 
edge to the masses, and (3) to provide suitable recreation for the public 
by the showing of films of educational value. Each province has been divided 
into two or three districts in order to facilitate the distribution of films. 
Cne trained operator is assigned to each district, and his duties are to show 
educational films in every town and village in his district. These programs 
are to be supplied regularly by the Ministry and presented in schools, guild 
halls, temples, or wherever it is conveniently suitable. This operator works 
under the direct supervision of the Department of Education of his particular 
province, and each provincial department is held responsible for the dis- 
tribution and showing of these films and must submit monthly reports to the 
Ministry. 

The Central Studio in Nanking, a government project completed in 1S35, 
has evidenced genuine merit in the technical resources employed in the two 
feature sound pictures it produced in 1236, namely, "The Warrior" and "The 
Secret Code". 

One of the highlights in the distribution field is the rapid stride 
Nanking has made in assuming a place of major importance for the exhibition of 
motion pictures. Fifteen years ago, with a population of approximately 300,000 
the city has rapidly grown in size until today 1 million people are within the 
capital's limits. However, as recently as 5 years ago the city was not con- 
sidered of any value to distributors; Shanghai, Hong Kong, Cantcn, and Tientsin 
then holding the ranking positions for the release of imported pictures. Today 
such is not the case; Nanking has moved into third place being surpassed only 
by Shanghai and Hong Kong for the release of both foreign and domestic pic- 
tures. In additiln to 4 sound theaters showing first-run Chinese pictures 
and seccnd-run foreign films, the city has two large, first-class cinemas, 
"The New Capitol" and "The State", the latter being opened during the year 
and is favorably comparable to first-class theaters in the United States. 

Chinese pictures are steadily gaining in domestic popularity, and pro- 
ducers are now paying increased attention to their entertainment and educa- 
tional value as well as extending efforts to improve their technical qualities. 

TAXES- 

Taxation is high and varies in different parts of the country. 



2487 



-39- 



THEATERS- 

There are about 300 standing theater properties including Manchuria, 
Hong Kong, and Macao, with an aggregate seating capacity of approximately 
155,000 for theaters equipped for sound and approximately 80,000 for silent 
houses . 

SOUND- 

Approximately 183 theaters are wired for sound with an average seating 
capacity of 850 per house. During 1936 the installation of American sound 
reproducers for projection equipment is reported to have advanced by more 
than 100 percent compared with 1935. This increase is principally attributed 
to augmented sales efforts on the part of American representatives in China 
and to the fact that silent theaters are being converted into sound theaters 
with another contributing factor being that much of the old sound equipment 
of various makes has now become obsolete. Theater owners are also becoming 
increasingly aware that the additional expenditure necessary for the installa- 
tion of American equipment is compensated for by its durability, quality, and 
by box-office receipts. These new orders have chiefly gone into first class 
theaters situated in the larger cities such as Shanghai, Nanking, Hong Kong, 
and Canton and are about equally distributed between foreign and Chinese enter- 
prises. 

It still holds true, hov/ever, that China generally remains a price 
market particularly for equipment of this type. While domestically manufac- 
tured or "reassembled" sound reproducers are principally used in the smaller 
Chinese theaters, the market for such equipment has not progressed in pro- 
portion to the rise witnessed in the demand for the American product. In 
fact, one of the leading Chinese manufacturers of sound reproducers discon- 
tinued this line of business during the year, as it is reported to have proved 
unprofitable because of delayed payments of outstanding accounts and to in- 
stances of minor organizations copying their product to the detriment of their 
own sales. While American representatives are anticipating that the 1937 
market will remain at least on par with the 1936 level, China's nationalization 
of silver and the yuan's subsequent decline in value in terms of foreign 
currencies, coupled with domestic products and other offerings from abroad, 
such conditions, exclusive of any political uncertainties, may tend to make 
it increasingly difficult for the Chinese to extend their full import volume 
of business to American manufacturers or permit them to take complete ad- 
vantage of the superior products offered by American manufacturers of sound 
equipment . 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 1.633,027 ft. $29,455 
Negative sound 



2487 



-40- 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



1,262,514 ft. 
56,780 ft. 



$21,394 
$496 



COLOMBIA 



LEGISLATION- 

None . 
CENSORSHIP- 

The censorship of films comes under the direct control of the National 
Government in accordance with the provisions of Censorship Decrees Nos. 331 
and 700 of 1932. Boards of censorship in each departmental capital, consisting 
of three members and three alternates (five members and alternates in the 
City of Bogota) , serving without remuneration review pictures in each depart- 
ment. Once a pcture has been passed by two members of any departmental 
board of censors the law prescribes that it may be exhibited throughout 
the Republic without further censorship. However, in practice certain de- 
partmental boards of censors insist upon approving a previously censored pic- 
ture before allowing it to be shown in the district under their jurisdiction. 
Censorship is not strict. 

COMPETITION- 

Approximately 80 percent of the features released in Colombia are Ameri- 
can made- During the past year there has been a considerable increase in the 
number of British features displayed, and also some increase in the number of 
French, German, and Mexican pictures shown. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Colombian basic copyright law dates from 1886 and subsequent laws do not 
specifically deal with motion pictures. Present copyright laws are considered 
inadequate. Colombia is not a member of the I.nternational Convention. The 
following laws and decrees make up Colombian copyright Legislation: 



Law 32 of 1885, Decree of 1886. 



Law 57 of 1887, Decree 1226 of 1922. 



Law 104 of 1922, Decree 1708 of 1930. 



PRODUCTION- 



There are no studios in Colombia, 
news reels and advertising films. 
2487 



production being limited to occasional 



-41- 



TAXES- 



The National Defense Tax of 10 percent on gross receipts of motion pic- 
ture exhibitions established by Law 10 of 1932, was modified by Presidential 
Decree effective as of March 1, 1935, as follows: 5 percent on tickets up to 
and including 20 centavos, 6 percent on tickets from 21 centavos to 30 cen- 
tavos, 7 percent on tickets from 31 centavos to 40 centavos, 8 percent on 
tickets from 41 centavos to 60 centavos, 10 percent on tickets of over 60 
centavos , 

This reduction represents a saving of about 3.5 percent of the former 
tax, and lowers direct taxes on the motion picture exhibitor to about 20 per- 
cent as compared to 23.5 percent previous to the recent decree. 

Poster taxes: for one-sheet posters, 0.80 centavos per set of 30; for 
two-sheet posters, 1.60 pesos per set of 30; for three-sheet posters, 2.40 
pesos per set of 30. (Peso valued at approximately $0.57 U. S.). 



There are approximately 210 theaters in Colombia with a total seating 
capacity of 40,000. 

One of the most interesting developments in the motion picture exhibition 
business in Colombia during recent months has been the steady increase in the 
number of non-American films shown in Colombian motion picture houses. The 
more effective competition is to be found in European produced pictures, but 
films of Latin American origin also are being marketed even though in com- 
paratively small numbers. 

It is believed that British-made films represent the most important com- 
petition both from a quality and numerical standpoint. The theater-going 
public, while seemingly preferring American-made pictures because of more in- 
teresting plots, better acting, and superior direction, appreciate the su- 
periority of the British picture over its European rivals. 



There are 130 theaters wired for sound, and about 30 others are supplied 
periodically with portable sound equipment. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



1935 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3,131,891 ft 



$65 , 270 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,640,754 ft 
30,362 ft 



$58,950 
$891 



2487 



-42- 
COSTS RICA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws affecting the importation of motion pictures. 
CENCORCHIP- 

There is a Governiient censor. The censor is appointed by the Governor 
of San Jose, though the Secretary for the Interior is the final judge. 

COMPETITION- 

Duritig 1936, out of 484 films shown in Costa Rica, 443 were American. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Exchange of copyright courtesies. 
PRODUCTION- 

No films are produced in Costa Rica. 
TAXES- 

A tax is imposed by the National Government of 5 percent of the gross box 
receipts. Another tax of 5 percent is imposed in the net receipts (income tax) 
This latter tax applies to practically all businesses. 

THEATERS- 

There are 37 theaters in Costa Rica. Total seating capacity, 23,727. 
Theaters present shows daily at 3, 7 and 8:30 p.m., and on Sundays and 
holidays give additional exhibitions. Tastes of audiences are similar to 
those in the United States, with action pictures in demand. American stars and 
American pictures in general, with super-imposed titles in Spanish are 
preferred. There is a general objection to dubbed Spanish films. 

SOUND- 

There are 36 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 512,095 ft._ $6,610 
Negative sound 

24C7 



-43- 



1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 335,206 ft. $3,948 
Negative sound — 



CUBA 

LEGISLATION- 

In the Gaceta Oficial of June 10, 1936, Extraordinary Edition No. 190, 
there appeared Decree No. 1556 signed by the President and the Secretary of 
Interior on June 8, 1936, creating a Cuban Board of Motion Picture Censors in 
the city of New York. The stated purpose of this board is to review all pic- 
tures destined for Cuban distribution which have been produced in the United 
States. The old Board of Review, Comision Revisora de Peliculas created by 
Decree 1521 of September 20, 1926, and 361 of March 2, 1927, will continue to 
function in Habana, but its activities have been limited to reviewing pictures 
not produced in the United States. 

As a result of protests by American film companies and their refusal to 
submit films to the New York Board there was issued Decree No. 2131, published 
in the August 5 issue of the Official Gazette rendering null and void Decree 
No. 1556 of June 2, published in the Official Gazette of June 10, which au- 
thorized the establishment in New York of a film censorship board. 

By the dissolution of the New York board, censorship of American films is 
returned to the Habana Censorship Board. 

A bill has been introduced in the Cuban Senate providing for the creation 
of an organization to be knovra as the Patronato de la Cinematograf ia Nacional 
(National Motion Picture Board), to supervise, foment, and otherwise assist the 
development of a motion-picture industry on the Island. 

The proposed legislation would create an Academia de Cinematograf ia (Mo- 
tion Picture Academy) which would engage the services of cameramen, make-up 
artists, electricians, etc., organize a section of declamation for motion- 
picture work, provide dancing masters, etc. 

The bill also states that the Board would lend financial assistance to 
Cuban individuals or companies set up in the country to produce films. 

Funds for the financing of the Board and its activities would be raised 
by an emission of postage stamps not exceeding a total face value of 100,000 
pesos. A special drawing of the National Lottery is also proposed in the bill, 
to enlarge the funds of the Board. 



2487 



-44- 



CZNSORSHIP- 

Reg-alations governing the censorship of films provide for the inspection 
of films by the Film Censorship Board under the jurisdiction of the Department 
of the Interior (Gobernacion ) . The decision as to whether a picture may or 
may not be exhibited is determined by this Board, which was reorganized in 
August 1936, and is composed of the Secretary of the Interior and five mem- 
bers. Decisions are valid provided they are concurred in by three of the 
members. Most of the films are approved by the Commission from synopsis 
sheets and photographs. Law No. 61, promulgated in the Gaceta Oficial on 
April 3, 1935, creates a "Comision Nacioral de Examen de Obras Teatrales y 
Peliculas Cinematograf icas" , to be composed of 11 members of various organiza- 
tions. 

The Secretaria de Governacion (Department of the Interior) which is 
charged with the censorship of motion pictures exhibited in Cuba, has ver- 
bally requested the distributors of news-reel films to malie an effort to elim- 
inate from such films all scenes showing salutes of the factions engaged in 
the Spanish civil war. The step has been taken in order to lessen the pos- 
sibility of disturbances in the theaters, due to the too vigorous expression 
of approval on the part of members of the audience, of one or other of the 
warring groups. 

COMPETITION- 

Films shown are 80 to 85 percent American. The remaining business is 
divided among the films from Great Britain, Spain, France, Germany, Mexico, and 
Argentina. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright Act 1909 by Presidential Proclamation, November 17, 1902, ex- 
tended April 9, 1S20, December 9, 1920. The new Patent and Trade Mark Law of 
1936 gives special protection to motion picture films apart from that under 
copyright law. Trade mark of manufacturer or producer must have been regis- 
tered prior to application for registration of film. Application must be held 
by producer or assignee in Cuba. 

PRODUCTION- 

Motion pictures are not produced in Cuba. There is a small production 
from time to time of news film shots. Two firms have been working during 
recent months in the preparation, for showing in Cuban theaters, of very 
short films with sound accompaniment, of an advertising nature. 



2487 



-45- 



TAXES- 



Distributors in Habana are subject to a municipal business tax of $375.00 
per year. They are also subject to the Cuban Government tax of 3 percent on 
gross receipts and a tax of 1| percent on gross sales. In addition, there is 
a scaled stamp tax on the face value of contracts signed by exhibitors and 
distributors; i percent remittance tax; and maternity tax of ^ percent of 
gross payroll. 



THEATERS- 



^ It is estimated that at present about 350 theaters are in operation 
throughout the Island. 



SOUND- 



Estimates place number of theaters equipped with sound apparatus at 300. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 5,107,132 ft. $97,827 

Negative sound 1,006 ft. $20 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 4,500,179 ft. $89,123 

Negative sound 21,328 ft. $216 



CZECHOSLOVAKIA 

LEGISLATION- 

American producers resumed distribution on February 8, 1935, no American 
sound feature having been sold by any large producers from April 30, 1932, un- 
til that date, with the exception of one company which was bound by contractual 
relations. Negotiations regarding the return of American pictures to the mar- 
ket were conducted several times in 1933 and in 1934 without result, owing to 
refusal of Government to modify existing control. At the end of October 
1934, negotiations were resumed. 



An instruction of the Ministry of Commerce, published in the Official 
Gazette of November 16, 1934, and effective on that date, set forth certain 
new regulations applying to the import of exposed motion-picture films. The 
provisions thereof, with subsequent amendments, were as follows: 

1. Exposed motion pictures may be imported only by individuals, com- 
panies, or juridical persons who possess a trade license for producing or 
2487 



-46- 



dealing in such films and who comply with the provisions set forth in this in- 
struction, provided that upon their own application they are entered in the 
register of importers by the Ministry of Commerce. Import licenses are not 
transferable and will be issued to the exchange v/hich will distribute the re- 
spective films in the country. 

2. Applications for an import permit are to be submitted through the 
Czechoslovak Association of Film Industry and Trade in Prague. 

3. Each importer nust in advance and at his own expense show the picture 
to the Film Advisory Committee. 

4. Each sound feature film imported into Czechoslovakia and approved by 
the Film A.dvisory Committee must be entered in the register of imported sound 
feature films, which is kept by the Czechoslovak Association of Film Industry 
and Trade in Prague. 

Imported silent pictures, as well as sound features up to 300 meters in 
length, nature, sport, industrial, news, and documentary pictures must be 
entered in the register of other imported pictures, kept by the Czechoslovak 
Association of Motion Picture Industry and Trade at Prague. 

5. Entry in the register may be made only when the applicant submits a 
certificate from the Ministry of Commerce showing that there are no objections 
to the import of the picture under consideration. 

6. Only after the importer submits evidence that the picture has been 
entered in the register will the Ministry of Commerce issue to him an import 
permit for customs clearance and a certificate designated for the Ministry of 
Interior to be presented when the picture is submitted for censorship. 

7. Imports of exposed motion picture films will be permitted in Czech 
language versions and in the language version of the country of origin. 
Dubbing of imported films to be shown in Czechoslovakia into another language 
is permitted only in cases when dubbing has first been done in the Czech lan- 
guage. All copies of imported films shown in a version of the language spoken 
by a local minority must be provided with superimposed titles in the Czech 
language. The titles must be made in Czechoslovakia. Exceptions from the 
above provisions may be granted by the Ministry of Commerce after a hearing of 
the Film Advisory Committee. 

8. Importers of news reels must include, weekly, at least 20 percent of 
the total meterage in quality Czechoslovak sound news and must have all copies 
of news reels made in that country. 

9. Whoever imports a minimum of five sound feature pictures during a 
12-month period must prove prior to October 1 of each current year that he is 



2487 



-47- 



offering for distribution at least one cultural-propaganda short produced in 
Czechoslovakia in accordance with the suggestions of the confirmed Film Advi- 
sory committee. A producer of a sound feature picture may be released from 
this obligation by following a hearing by the Film Advisory Committee, provided 
said producer's feature contains sufficient cultural subject matter. 

10. The proceeds of the registration fees will be applied to subsidizing 
the production of Czechoslovak sound films. The Association will pay to the 
producers of these films, within the limits of these funds, a maximum subsidy 
of 210,000 crowns per film under the following conditions, as amended to date: 

(a) The producer is to submit the complete scenario to the Film Ad- 
visory Committee at least 3 weeks before starting production. 

(b) The Film Advisory Committee, under regulations adopted October 
27, 1936, shall classify contemplated Czech feature productions 
into four categories: (1) those which the Committee does not rec- 
ognize and therefore grants no subsidy; (2) those which the com- 
mittee recognizes and accords a subsidy of 70,000 crowns; (3) those 
which the committee recognizes and recommends and accords a subsidy 
of 140,000 crowns; (4) those which the Committee considers cf 
exceptional quality and accords a subsidy of 210,000 crowns. 

(c) Upon approval of the scenario by the Film Advisory Committee 
and upon submission of proof by the producer that production has 
been started in a local studio, the Association will pay 70,000 
Czechoslovak crowns to the producer. 

(d) The remainder of whatever subsidy is awarded the producer is 
to be paid to the producer when the finished film is approved by 
the Film Advisory Committee which may refuse payment in total or 
in part, if the qualify of the film is not satisfactory. 

(e) Producers of educational or propaganda films approved by the 
Film Advisory Committee will receive a subsidy fixed by the Film Ad- 
visory Committee. 

11. Provided that no uniform circumstances endanger the duration of this 
new regulation of importation of films into Czechoslovakia, the Czechoslovak 
authorities hope it will give satisfaction and will remain in force for a 
period acceptable to the importers. 

Because the new instruction failed to contain a time clause and because 
United States companies considered even the new regime as being discriminatory 
against American pictures in favor of German sound films, they did not re- 
turn to the market, and no further negotiations were carried on until January 
14, 1935, when an agreement was reached with the Czechoslovak authorities. 



2487 



-48- 



The American companies accepted the major points of the new regime in princi- 
pal as it provided basically for a free market. In return the Acericans pro- 
cured a valuable concession which enables them to bring in without payment of 
the regular 20,000 crowns registration fee one picture dubbed in German for 
every 8 American sound features imported. The companies are permitted to 
distribute the dubbed film in sections where English sound features have no 
market because of German competition, i. e., in certain districts specifically 
'iczL^nated by the local authorities where the majority of the population is 
German. The granting of this concession, which was important because it 
presented to American firms operating in the market a unique opportunity of 
amortizing German dubbed films which they are obliged to produce in Germany and 
Austria in order to remain in those markets, assured the return of American 
companies and they resumed distribution on February 8, 1835. 

A total of 16 such dubbed films were brought in under this arrangement 
during 1955, and as far as can be ascertained at this time, about 14 were im- 
ported during the first 10 months of 1S36. 

A meric an Comp anies Leave Assoc iati on. 

Feeling that the voting power v/hich they had in the Czechoslovak Associa- 
tion of Motion Picture Industry and Trade was not commensurate to their im- 
portance as distributors of films in Czechoslovakia, the five branches of Am- 
erican film distributors operating in Czechoslovakia stepped out of the Asso- 
ciation in November 1936 and established an independent organization known as 
the Federation of Film Import and Trade in the Czechoslovak Republic. Ques- 
tions pending, on which the American distributors did not wish the Association 
to speak for them, include the proposed establishment of a Film Exchange to 
regulate film distribution and trade and the concentration of power implied 
therein. Less important was the alleged inadequate representation on the 
Film Advisory Committee. It appears possible that in addition to the repre- 
sentative of the Association of Motion Picture Industry and Trade a repre- 
sentative of the newly created Federation will be admitted to the Committee. 

CENSORSHIP. 

Under the Ministry of the Interior, censorship is very strict. A total of 
1,081 pictures were censored during 1935, of which 1,060 were released for 
showing, including 346 sound feature films. Of the 21 pictures banned, 
13 were American and 5 were German. During the January to September period of 
1936, 220 feature films were passed by the Board of Censors. There were 101 
features of American origin, of which 13 were German versions. 

COMPETITICN- 

Of the total 346 sound features released by the censors, 157 were A.meri- 
can, SO German, 36 Czechoslovak, 20 Austrian, 18 French, and 13 British, 



2487 



-49- 



other countries supplying 22 features. This indicates the important position 
American companies have assumed since distribution was resumed on the Czecho- 
slovak market February 8, 1935. In 1934 only 25 American features had been 
authorized for showing. Preliminary returns for the first 10 months of 1936 
show that 111 sound features (including 14 German versions) out of a censored 
total of 250 features were American. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Reciprocal declarations between Czechoslovakia and the United States were 
exchanged April 27, 1927. Citizens of one country are assured full copyright 
protections in territory of the other country. This went into effect March 1, 
1927, under United States Copyright Act of March 4, 1909, and Czechoslovak 
Copyright Law of November 24, 1926, and amendment made thereto in Law of April 
24, 1936. 

PRODUCTION- 

During 1935, a total of 24 sound feature films were produced, of which 21 
were in Czech and 3 in other languages (German and French) , In addition, 6 
versions of Czech films were made. During the first 9 months of 1936, 19 fea- 
ture films produced in Czechoslovakia were passed by the film censors. 

STUDIOS- 

The A-B Motion Picture Studios showed a net profit of 282,435 crowns from 
1935 operations as against 324,504 crowns in 1334. Czechoslovakia's second 
studio, the "Host", which has been in financial difficulties since it was 
opened (and even before) in 1934 procured a Government guarantee of credits 
in an amount of 3,500,000 crowns in October 1936. A third film studio and a 
color film laboratory are reported as projected. 

TAXES- 

Very high. The present municipal entertainment taxes average 35 percent 
of gross receipts in sound theaters and 25 percent in silent theaters. The 
Ministry of Interior has prepared a draft of a lav/ which would lower these 
rates to about 20 percent and 15 percent, respectively, and in addition estab- 
lish differential tax rates for films rated according to cultural value. 

THEATERS- 

There are 1,833 theaters (290 showing daily, 715 two to six times weekly, 
and 828 once weekly) as against 1,955 at the close of 1933. The decrease re- 
sulted from communities where unemployment has been particularly heavy. The 
total .seating capacity was 578,877 persons. 



2487 



-50- 



SOUND- 

Of all theaters, 1,343 were wired for sound and had a seating capacity 
of 483,615 representing an increase of 525 theaters in the last 2 years. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 1,292,182 ft. $26,725 

Negative sound 52,770 ft. $2,160 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 1,523,912 ft. $29,349 

Negative sound 16,172 ft. $202 

DENMARK 

LEGISLATION- 

As in recent years, motion pictures during 1S36 were not affected by the 
Danish import control system which has severely reduced the importation of 
most other ccmraodities, especially those of American origin. However, since 
July 1936 import permits have been required for the importation of exposed 
films with Danish text and as a result such films are nov/ provided with Danish 
text locally by such firms as Nordisk Films Company A/S, Frederiksberggade 
25, and Joh. Ankerstj erna, Lygten 49, both in Copenhagen. A proposal for a new 
foreign exchange control law is now under consideration by the legislature, 
which will extent the system until the end of 1938, but so far as can be as- 
certained this will not operate to restrict the importation of films. 

Patent Decision. 

The supreme court in Denmark on October 14, 1934, sustained a decision of 
a lower court granting an injunction to Nordisk Films Company A/S, Copenhagen, 
forbidding the showing in Denmark of American pictures using the so-called" 
noiseless intensity system" on the ground that this use infringed the Petersen 
& Poulsen patents held by Nordisk Films Clmpany A/S. Following this decision 
four American companies closed agreements with Nordisk Films Company A/S 
whereby the American companies obliged themselves to pay a license fee to the 
Danish company amounting to 350 kroner for each film shown using the "noise- 
less" patent. The agreement run for 6 years from February 5, 1934, the date 
of the injunction. The agreements further provide that news reels and shorts 
are exempt from the tax if they are shown only as extra numbers. If they com- 
prise the major part of the program they are subject to the fee. 

Two American film companies refused to sign the agreeraent, claiming 
that their films, which are re-recorded on special equipment, are not cover- 
ed by the Nordisk Film Patent. The lower court in these cases upheld the 
legality of showing these re-recorded films without payment of a license fee 
and the case was appealed to the supreme court which in the early part of 1936 



2487 



-51- 



af firmed the decision. Nevertheless, one of these companies made an agree- 
ment obliging itself to pay 700 kroner for each film shown using the "noise- 
less" patent. 

The other American company which won its case continues to import its 
own re-recorded films. 

It is claimed that the Petersen & Poulsen motion picture patents cover 
the "noiseless intensity system" as used by a well known American company. 

Efforts are being made to enforce the Petersen & Poulsen patents in 
Sweden, England, Norway, and Poland. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Danish film censoring bureau in the fiscal year 1935-36, ended March 
31, reviewed a total of 2,187 films (including copies and advertising) having 
a length of 1,713,120 meters as compared with 1,884 films with a total length 
of 1,446,140 meters the year before. Of these films, 398 (of which 259 were 
copies) were pictures having a length of over 1,000 meters as compared with 
584 (of which 264 copies) the year previous; 364 were pictures having a length 
under 1,000 meters (190 the preceding year); 566 were news reels, topical 
films, etc. (407 the previous year); 113 were comics (166 the previous year); 
and 367 were advertising films practically all of which had a length of less 
than 25 meters (537 the year before). 

Of the 2,187 films (including copies) examined by censor in 1935-36, 
1,097 having a total length of 973,960 meters were American (corresponding 
figures for the previous year were 821 and 740,000); 279 totaling 206,740 
meters were Danish (194 and 278,840); 253 totaling 265,770 meters were German 
(163 and 192,110); 61 totaling 66,245 meters were Swedish (57 and 76,840); 
57 totaling 72,000 meters were British (46 and 49,085); 39 totaling 25,235 
meters were Austrian; 6 totaling 8,820 meters were Russian; 5 totaling 4,475 
meters were Hungarian; 4 totaling 2,050 meters were Norwegian, 2 totaling 2,585 
meters were Italian; 2 totaling 2,390 meters were Swiss; one of 370 meters was 
Jugoslavian; and one of 325 meters was Estonian. 

The number of silent films shown in 1935-36 is estimated to have been 
less than 20 as compared to 67 in 1934-35, of which none were feature films. 

No dubbed films were exhibited in the Danish market in 1936. 

C ensorship Regulations . 

All films shown publicly in Denmark must be censored by Statens Films- 
censur (The Government Film Censor), Frederiksholmskanal 27, Copenhagen, who 
is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice. 



2487 



.52- 



In 1935-36 the censor gave approval to 2,092 films, including copies, 
having a length of 1,499,410 meters as opposed to 1,750 films, including 
copies, having a length of 1,152,095 meters in 1934-35. 

In all, 86 films (including copies) with a length of 194,930 meters were 
forbidden for children in 1935-36 as against 129 films (including copies) with 
a length of 282,320 meters in 1934-35. Nine films, totaling 18,780 meters, 
were completely rejected by censor in 1935-36. In the 1935-36 year a total 
of 1,427 meters was cut from 48 films, including copies, as compared with 1,131 
meters cut from 43 films, including copies, in 1934-35. 

Films of 16 millimeters became more popular in 1935-36. One theater owned 
and operated by the State railways and located in the building of the main 
railway station in Copenhagen specializes on these films. A total of 120 
films of the 16-millimeter type were shown in 1935-36, most of which were 
topical or news reels. 

Censor fees are 6 ore per meter (one krone equals 100 ore, about 22 
cents) for Danish and foreign films except news reels and advertising films 
for which the fee is 3 ore per meter. 

COMPETITON- 

A total of 229 feature films were released during the first 9 months 
of 1936 as compared with 285 during the same months of 1935. American leader- 
ship made further advance on a percentage basis, viz, from 59 percent of all 
films shown in 1935 to about 64 percent in 1936. Of the total releases through 
September 1936, 147 American as against 170 in the corresponding period of 
1935. German producers increased their participation from 40 films in 1935 to 
41 in 1936, or from 14 percent to 18 percent. British releases dropped from 30 
in 1935 to 11 in 1936, or from 10 percent to 5 percent; French films declined 
in number from 15 to 9, or from 5 percent to 4 percent; Swedish from 13 to 10 
films, or about 4 percent; and Danish from 10 films to 6. Other films re- 
leased were 2 Austrian, 1 Hungarian, 1 Russian, and 1 Jugoslavian. The number 
of prints of domestic films continued to outrank all except the American. 

The demand as to types of films remained unchanged. Two American his- 
torical films were especially well received. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Established by Presidential Proclamation May 9, 1893, extended April 9, 
1910, and December 9, 1920. 

PRODUCTION- 

Nordisk Films Company A/S, Frederiksberggade 25, Palladium A/S, Axelborg; 
and Teatrenes Filmskontor (Asa Film) Jernbanegade 4, all of Copenhagen, 



2487 



-53- 



are the only Danish producers of motion picture features. The other companies 
specialize in advertising films or short subjects. 

Each of these producers owns one sound studio. The studio owned by Nor- 
disk Film Company A/S has four stages and one sound-recording apparatus, a 
Danish Petersen Poulsen recorder. The Palladj.um A/S studio has two stages 
and a Bofa sound system (made by Bang and Olufsen, Struer, Denmark) . Teatrenas 
Filmskontor (Asa Film) has one stage and a German Bauer sound apparatus. 

Only 6 features were released by Danish producers in 19.'^6 as compared to 
10 in 1935. Three were produced by Palladium, two by Teatrenes Filmsklntor, 
and ore by Nordisk Films Company. No films were produced in cooperation with 
Swedish or other foreign producers in 1936. 

The Danish Film Industry claims that the existing amusement tax of 40 
percent of box-office receipts i3 too heavy in view of the limited size of 
the market for Danish films and has petitioned the government for relief. This 
request has not been acceded to and as a result the producers have preferred 
not to give out information respecting their production plans in 1937. 

The three films released by Palladium during 1935 were "Snushanerne" 
(The Prying Fellows), "Milliomardrengen" (The Millionaire Boy), and "Panser- 
basse" (The Cop) . The two films released during the same year by Teatrenes 
Filmskonter were "Sol over Denmark" (Sunshine Over Denmark) and "Cirkus Revuen" 
(The Circus Revue), while the title of the only film produced by Nordisk Films 
Company A/S in 1936 was "6' Traekning" (Sixth Lottery Drawing). 

TAXES- 

Exhibitors in Denmark are burdened with a 40-percent tax on box-office , 
receipts. 

In the fiscal year 1934-35 ended March 31 (the latest year for which 
statistics are available), the amusement tax on films yielded 6,491,725 kroner 
(5,909,975 kroner in 1933-34). Of this amount 3,378,978 kroner was returned 
by Copenhagen theaters (3,124,426 in 1933-34). As the amusement tax on films 
is equal to 40 percent of the gross ticket price it will be seen that the 
total box office turn-over at all Danish motion picture theaters was approxi- 
mately 14,775,000 kroner in 1933-34 and 16,230,000 kroner in 1934-35. 

Films of special social or educational value may be exempted from tax by 
the Ministry of Justice. Four or five films are granted this privilege each 
year. 

THEATERS- 

On April 1, 1936, there were 552 motion picture theaters in Denmark as 
against 340 the year before. 



2487 



-54- 



The generally improved domestic economic conditions prevailing in Denmark 
in 1S36 benefited owners of cinema theaters and receipts from ticket sales, 
particularly in the urban districts, are estimated to have been above those 
for 1S35. 

American productions strengthened their foothold and so did all foreign 
films, considered as a whole. Danish films continued to exercise great drawing 
power but because their market is limited to one small country it is difficult 
to keep a high artistic standard and at the same time make a profit on them. 
Competition among local film exchanges was enhanced by the establishment of 
several new offices. 

The most important of the new theaters constructed during the year are 
"Bella Bio" in Copenhagen with about £00 seats (German Bauer sound installa- 
tion) and "Slotsbiografen" in Randers with about 500 seats (Danish Bofa sound 
installation) . The former is a first-run and the latter a second-run theater. 

A number of older theaters were reconstructed and modernized during 
the year particularly in the provinces where many smaller theaters were housed 
in buildings or rooms that were originally constructed for other purposes. 

No theaters are owned by foreign motion picture producers or distributors 
and there are no chain theaters, both such forms of ownership being impossible 
under the provisions of the Danish motion-picture law. 

The following table lists Danish cinemas according to seating capacity, 
number of performances given yearly, and the annual license fee to which they 
are subjected: 

Nu j.ber of theaters £eats Performances License f ee 



(Krone) 



131 


Up to 500 


Up to 151 yearly 


0 


47 


" " 500 


" " 300 


150 


25 


" " 500 




300 


33 


" " 500 


,. M 500 


5C0 


SO 


" " 800 


" " 850 


SCO 


14 


" " 1,000 


" " 1,200 " 


1,800 


8 


" " 1,200 


" " 2.000 " 


2,500 


4 


Unlimited 


Unlimited 


5. COO 



Greater Copenhagen (including suburbs) with a population of approxi- 
mately 900.000 had 44 motion picture theaters on January 1, 1936, with a total 
seating capacity of 26,874 as against 41 theaters with 24,578 seats the pre- 
vious year. Of the 44 theaters, 18 seat up to 500; 21, from 5C0 to 1,000; 
and 5 seat over 1,000. 



2487 



-55- 



Statistics pertaining to greater Copenhagen indicate that attendance 
at motion-picture houses increased from 10,081,000 in 1934 to 11,020,000 in 
1935, a gain of 947,000 or about 9 percent. The increase in ticket sales in 
Copenhagen proper has continued in 1936, its cinema having sold 5,127,931 
tickets during the first 8 months of 1936 as compared with 4,975,840 tickets 
during the same months of 1935, a gain of 152,091 or about 3 percent. 



SOUND- 



Practically all of the theaters are now wired for sound and about 175 
give daily performances. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3,764,943 ft. $75,713 

1,600 ft. $53 

3, 464', 941 ft. $69,596 

101,752 ft. $1,635 



DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 

LEGISLATION- 

Laws affecting the motion-picture industry are confined to laws imposing 
taxes on undertakings and admission prices and such as restrict the admission 
of minors into the theaters. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Censorship is exercised by a Municipal Commission. While there is no 
national law in regard to censorship, the municipal ordinance of Santo Domingo 
or a practically identical one has been adopted by the other municipalities. 
Censorship is very strict; while it has not been refused on any films, ob- 
jections have been raised to many films on moral grounds. 

During the year 1936 the censors have forbidden the showing of at least 
two pictures, because they have allegedly offended the national or patriotic 
feelings of the people of a country other than the Dominican Republic. In one 
case the showing of a film was prohibited on the alleged protest of the Cuban 
Minister or Charge d'Affairs, but in both cases it is believed that the objec- 
tions were far-fetched. 

COMPETITION- 

Of the films shown, 95 percent are American, the other 5 percent are Brit- 
ish. 



24C7 



-56- 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The title of each film might be registered under the Dominican trade-mark 
law, but no occasion has yet arrived to resort to this recourse. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is no production in this market and no studio facilities. 



Theaters, in addition to the regular property taxes which are assessed 
against real estate of any class, must pay a special tax of 40 cents per 
annum for each seat. Tax on admissions is 2 cents per each admission up to 
20 cents and 10 percent of the admission price above 20 cents. 



There are 23 theaters in the Dominican Republic. Two new theaters, both 
wired for sound have been installed during the year 1936, one additional thea- 
ter was opened in Santiago, and one theater was closed in Moca. The total 
seating capacity of the 23 theaters is 10,400. 

The range of admission prices is reported to be from 5 and 10 cents up to 
40 cents for specials. It rarely, if ever, exceeds the latter figure while the 
average motion-picture program consists of a feature and a comedy or cartoon. 

Programs are changed daily, but occasionally specials are run in the two 
leading theaters of Santo Domingo for 2 consecutive days, Saturdays and Sun- 
days . 

The favorite types of pictures are musical comedies, or reviews and 
comedies. An occasional good heavy drama is well received. American stars 
are well known and are decidedly preferred. Pictures with Spanish sound, or 
pictures with English sound and titled or legends in Spanish are preferred. 
There is strong objection to American stars with native language "dubbed in". 



TAXES- 



High. 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



There are 23 theaters wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 



Positive sound 



2,867,769 ft 
35,564 ft 



$9,140 
«711 



Negative sound 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,544,336 ft 



$7,928 



2487 



-57- 



EAST AFRICA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws inimical to American motion picture interests in this 
market . 

CENSORSHIP- 

Rules under the Kenya Stage Plays and Cinematograph Exhibitions Ordinance 
became effective on September 23, 1930, prescribing the method of constituting 
the Film Censorship Board, and granting the Board wide powers over silent and 
sound films, and posters, and advertising matter. 

Films may be approved for public exhibition, refused approval, or approved 
subject to excisions. Approval may also be subject to a condition that the 
film may be exhibited only to non-Africans. 

There are Censorship Boards at Nairobi, Kenya Colony; Dar-es-Salaam, 
Tanganyika Territory; Kampala, Uganda Protectorate; and Zanzibar. Gangster 
films are seldom passed by Censorship Boards in East Africa. This is es- 
pecially true in the Uganda Protectorate. 

COMPETITION- 

It is estimated that at least 75 percent of the films shown in East Africa 
are of American origin. However, with the improved quality of British films, 
the number of these shown has greatly increased. It is understood that almost 
all of the theater operators and the motion-picture importers are tied up with 
contracts which in effect close the market to American and foreign firms not 
already having connections in East Africa. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is no production of motion pictures in East Africa. 
TAXES- 

Taxes are very moderate. 
THEATERS- 

The theater at Eldoret, Kenya Colony, has been burned down, and one 
theater at Kampala, Uganda Protectorate, and another at Nairobi, Kenya Colony, 
equipped for sound are not operating at the present time. Of a total of 13 
theaters in East Africa, 11 are operating as follows: 



2487 



Country 


Town 


Sound 


Kenya : 


Nairobi 


3 




Mombasa 


2 




Nakuru 


1 


Tanganyika: 


Dar-es-Salaam 


2 




Tanga 


1 


Uganda: 


Kampala 


1 


Zanzibar : 


Zanzibar 


1 



Total 11 



SOUND- 

All 13 theaters are wired for sound. There are also two sound outfits in 
Kenya Colony carried on trucks on circuit to halls and hotels in Eldoret. 
Kitale, Kisumu, and Kakamega. 

It is possible that during 1937 a total of four more theaters equipped 
for sound will be constructed at the following places: Mombasa, Kenya Colony; 
Tanga and Mwanza, Tanganyika Territory; and Kampala, Uganda Protectorate. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 203,795 ft. $2,574 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 
Negative sound 

ECUADOR • 

LEGISLATION- 

A decree of August 8, 1887. known as the law of Authors' and Artists' 
Proprietary Rights (Ley de Propiedad Literaria y Artistica) protects writers 
and artists, but this law is antiquated, and its provisions do not cover the 
rights and protection of film producers and exhibitors. Consequently the lav/s 
of this country make it impossible to enforce exclusive rights to films by 
punishing the showing of them by unauthorized concerns, and they do not give 
any protection to the rights of producers of films. It is understood, however, 
that each individual film can be registered, and in that way the exclusive 
right to show that particular film in Ecuador can be obtained. 



46,387 ft. 930 



2487 



-59- 



Difficulties continued to be encountered by most distributors in obtaining 
foreign exchange for payment of rentals of films, although film imports have 
been exempt from the principal provisions of the control of foreign exchange 
established by an executive decree of July 30, 1936. 

CENSORSHIP- 

A board of Censors is established in each province by executive decree. 
Only specially prepared films or those receiving special permission may be 
shown for children. However, the law is not enforced, and apparently the 
question of whether a film is suitable for children is left to the parents. 

COMPETITION- 

The films are 85 percent American. 

It is reported that there has been a slight increase in the showing of 
foreign films during the period because of the advent on the market of low- 
priced Mexican films which have been circulating at the cheaper theaters. 

It is estimated that 12 German, 8 British, 4 Mexican, and 2 Argentine pic- 
tures were exhibited during the first 10 months of 1936. It is said that no 
Frenc'i films were exhibited during this same period. Quito appears to be 
a better market for foreign films than Guayaquil. The competition of foreign 
films in Ecuador cannot be regarded as significant, but it is the opinion of 
one distributor that this is partly because of lack of efficient distribution 
of such films. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Inter-American Copyright Convention at Buenos Aires, August 12, 1910. 

PRODUCTION- 

No moving pictures, either silent or sound, were 
small market would not warrant a domestic studio, 
number of scientific and semi-scientific expeditions 
in Ecuador, specially in the Oriente region. 

TAXES- 

In accordance with an executive decree of January 30, 1926 (Registro Of- 
icial No. 170, February 2, 1926 and No. 322, May 12, 1930), providing for 
municipal taxes, the municipalities are authorized to collect up to 10 percent 
on the gross receipts from the sale of admission tickets to theaters, motion 
pictures, concerts, horse racing, etc. In Guayaquil this tax is 10 percent; 
Quito 8 percent; and in other cities it ranges from 5 to 7 percent. A tax of 



produced in Ecuador. The 
During the past years a 
have been taking pictures 



2487 



-60- 



10 centavos for national defense is now collected on all admissions to thea- 
ters except on tickets for the cheapest seats which are situated in the gallery 
or second balcony. 

THEATERS- 

There are 34 moving picture theaters with a seating capacity of 40,765 
in Ecuador. This does not include the various projection rooms generally 
in club buildings about 12 towns and villages; total number of shows, approx- 
imately 240 per month; total seating capacity is estimated at 6,000. 

Important developments during 1S36 may be considered the establishing of 
a circuit moving picture service which covers the small villages situated on 
the railroad line of Guayaquil to Riobamba, the chief centers being Alausi and 
Huigra, important railroad stations where there are school buildings and club 
houses of the railroad workers. It is understood that portable equipment is 
used for this purpose and .performances are twice weekly. 

SOUND- 

All of the 34 theaters are wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 

1S36 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 26,388 ft. $381 
Negative sound 

EGYPT 

LEGISLATION- 

Nationalistic propaganda is fostering the development of local sound film 
production in Arabic, since most Egyptians are not acquainted with foreign 
languages. A proposal has been made to the Egyptian Government, based on 
nationalistic grounds, by the local film industry suggesting the compulsory 
use of a quota of Egyptian films in relation to foreign films. The object of 
this proposal is to encourage the infant local film industry. However, because 
of the paucity of the Eg^^ptian production at the present moment, it is expected 
that this proposal will not be favorably acted upon by the Government. 

The sole effective propaganda against foreign films in Egypt is being 
conducted by Jews and Jewish sympathizers against films produced in Germany. 



43,170 ft. $631 



2 487 



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Not more than three German films have been shown in Egypt since the inception 
of the anti-Semitic movement in that country. 

By decree which appeared in the Journal Officiel No. 54 of May 7, 1936, 
the Egyptian Government promulgated the International Convention of October 
1933 to facilitate the circulation of educational films. This decision, it is 
expected, will have a beneficial effect on the introduction of educational 
films in this market. 

By decision of the Ministry of Interior, films produced locally should be 
accompanied by a certificate issued by the Censorship Office of that Ministry. 
The idea is to prevent the showing abroad of films which might be prejudicial 
to Egypt. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Regulations are made under the Cinematograph Films Law, 1934. 

In exercise of the powers vested in the Governor by the Cinematograph 
Films Law, 1934, His Excellency the Governor, with the advice of the Executive 
Council, is pleased to make and hereby makes the following Regulations: 

1. These Regulatilns may be cited as the Cinematograph Films Regula- 
tions, 1935. 

2. In these Regulations - 

"the Board" means the Board of Censors; 
"film" means a cinematograph film; 

"the Secretary" means the Secretary of the Board and in- 
cludes an Assistant Secretary. 

"the Treasury" means the Public Treasury of Cyprus. 

3. Every application of the approval of a film by a Censorship Committee 
shall- 

(a) be submitted or forwarded to the Secretary; 

(b) be in accordance with Form A in the First Schedule 
hereto; and 

(c) be made rot less than three days before it is proposed 
to exhibit such film. 



-62- 



4. Every film in respect of whicl: an application, as in Regulation 3 
hereof prescribed, has been made shall be submitted for approval to a Censor- 
ship Committee. 

5. Upon receipt of an application made as in Regulation 3 hereof pre- 
scribed, the Secretary may arrange with the applicant to have the film project- 
ed at the applicant's risk and expense at Nicosia at such time as the Secre- 
tary may appoint: 

Provided that if the applicant requests to have the film projected at any 
place other than Nicosia, the Secretary may, on payment by the applicant of all 
traveling and other expenses required therefor, arrange that the film should 
be projected at the place requested by the applicant. 

6. There shall be paid into the Treasury in advance by every applicant a 
fee of five shillings in respect of every film submitted for examination and 
approval by a Censorship Committee, and tl:e official receipt for such fee shall 
be attached to the application by the applicant: 

Provided that no fee shall be paid - 

(a) in respect'of any film which does not exceed one thou- 
sand and two hundred feet in length and depicts or relates 
to comics, reviews of world news, musical extracts, car- 
toons, educational or cultural subjects, or 

(b) in respect of any film taken in Cyprus of less than 
thirty-five millimeters in width. 

7. The decision of a Censorship Committee on an application for the 
approval of a film made as in Regulation 3 hereof prescribed shall be given in 
accordance with Form B in the First Schedule hereto, and shall be delivered or 
forwarded to the applicant within two days of the date thereof. 

8. Every application for the approval of a poster by a Censorship Com- 
mittee shall- 

(a) be submitted or forwarded to the Secretary; 

(b) be in accordance with Form C, in the first schedule 
hereto; and 

(c) be made not less than two days before it is proposed 
to display or distribute such poster. 

9. The decision of a Censorship Committee on an application for 
the approval of a poster made as in Regulation 8 hereof prescribed shall be 



2487 



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given in accordance with Form D in the First Schedule hereto, and shall be 
delivered or forwarded to the applicant within two days of the date thereof. 

10. Any person who desires to appeal to the Board against the refusal of 
a Censorship Committee to approve a film or part thereof, shall forward to the 
president of the Board an appeal in accordance with Form E in the First Sched- 
ule hereto, and shall pay into the Treasury a fee of five shillings; 

Provided that if the Board allows the appeal, the said fee shall be re- 
funded to the appellant. 

11. Upon receipt of an appeal made as in Regulation 10 hereof prescribed, 
the President of the Board may arrange with the appellant to have a film 
projected at the appellant's risk and expense at Nicosia at such time as the 
President may appoint: 

Provided that if the appellant requests to have the film projected at any 
place other than Nicosia, the President of the Board, may, on payment by the 
appellant of all traveling and other expenses required, therefor, arrange 
that the film should be projected at the place requested by the appellant. 

12. The decision of the Board on an appeal as in Regulation 10 hereof 
prescribed shall be given in accordance with Form F in the First Schedule 
hereto, and shall be delivered or forwarded to the appellant within two days of 
the date thereof. 

13. Any person who desires to appeal to the Board against the refusal of 
a Censorship Committee to approve a poster shall forward to the President of 
the Board an appeal in accordance with Form G in the First Schedule hereto. 

14. The decision of the Board on an appeal made as in Regulation 13 here- 
of prescribed shall be given in accordance with Form H in the First Schedule 
hereto, and shall be delivered or forwarded to the appellant within two days 
of the date thereof. 

15. Every person exhibiting a film which has been approved by a Censor- 
ship Committee or by the Board, as the case may be, shall at every such exhi- 
bition, cause Form B, or Form F of the First Schedule hereto on v/hich such 
approval is recorded to be posted and kept posted for public inspection in a 
conspicuous place in the theater, building, or space in which such exhibition 
takes place. 

16. The Secretary shall keep a Register of Films in accordance with Form 
J in the Second Schedule hereto. 

17. Where these Regulations require that any decision or appeal shall be 
in accordance with a form in the First Schedule hereto, it shall be sufficient 
if the same is as nearly in accordance with such form as circumstances permit. 



2487 



-64- 



18. The following classes or kinds of advertising matter shall be ex- 
empted from censorship, that is to say - 

(a) any slide, handbill or leaflet which displays only 
the title and class of the film and the names of the 
actors, and 

(b) any locally produced programme, handbill or leaflet 
relating to a film which has been approved by a Censorship 
Committee or the Board, as the case may be. 

COMPETITION- 

Films are 78 percent American, 10 percent French, 8 percent British, 4 
percent Egyptian and from other countries. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The mixed tribunals deal with infringements of trade-marks, copyrights, 
and patents under the principles of general law and rules of equity. There 
are no specified laws regarding this. 

PRODUCTION- 

Egypt's motion-picture industry has made some progress since its es- 
tablishment in 1927. The production of films, however, is still very limited 
and consists mainly of Arabic feature films. During the 1936-37 season only 
5 films have been screened while 5 other films are at the time of reporting in 
the cutting room, in comparison with 13 films produced during the 1935-36 sea- 
son. Most of the films are made for account of individuals who pool their 
capital as a speculative venture. These films enjoy long runs generally in 
native theaters in Egypt and nearby Arabic-speaking countries. 

There are five small studios operating intermittently in Egypt and their 
equipment is relatively unimportant. The only large and up-to-date studio, 
inaugurated in October 1936, is that of the Societe Misr pour le Theatre et le 
Cinema, which is located about 5 miles from Cairo and 1 mile from the Pyramids. 
It is equipped with modern apparatus for taking both talkies and silent films. 
The Company has so far produced only one musical drama and six or seven news 
reels, but it plans to work out an extensive production program including a 
regular weekly news service and shorts on tourist propaganda, etc. 

TAXES- 

The Egyptian Government has been induced to modify the amendment tax 
imposed as from December 11, 1933, which worked out roughly on a 10 percent 
scale but with a minimum of P. T. 5 (approximately 250) per seat on tickets 
for theaters and other public places of amusement in Cairo, Alexandria, and 



2487 



-65- 



their environs. This tax has a serious effect on second and third-run houses, 
owing to the fact that in many cases the P. T. 5 minimuc represents a tax of 
15 to 30 percent, considering the very low price of tickets at these estab- 
lishments. The new taxation scheme enforced as from January 3, 1935, applies a 
10 percent scale on all categories up to P. T. 5. For tickets between P. T. 5 
and P. T. 10 the tax is P. T. 1, and from P. T. 10 to P. T. 250 the tax is 10 
percent of the next highest even ten; i. e., for P. T. 231 the tax would be 
P. T. 24. etc. From P. T. 250 to P. T. 400 the tax is 10 percent of the next 
highest even fifty; i. e., for P. T. 305 the tax would be P. T. 35. From P. T. 
500 to P. T. 1,000 the tax is 10 percent of the next highest even hundred; 
i. e., for P. T. 702 the tax is P. T. 80. Over P. T. 1.000 the tax continues 
at 10 percent for every hundred or fraction. 

On March 21. 1935, import duty on developed positive films was raised from 
L. E. 1 to L. E. per kilogram (L. E. 1 - $5 approximately) but reduced on 
May 9. 1935, to L. E. 2.5 per kilo net. 

THEATERS- 

There are 102 theaters in Egypt, including 10 military theaters for the 
amusement of the British troops stationed there. Of these, 10 or 12 operate 
in the open air during the long summer season only, while 8 or 10 indoor thea- 
ters close during the summer months on account of the excessive heat prevailing 
there and as none of the theaters in Egypt have, so far, been equipped with 
air-conditioning systems. 

SOUND- 

There are 102 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 1,235.901 ft. $24,370 

Negative sound — 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 1.055,125 ft. $23,993 
Negative sound — 



el salvador 

legislation- 
No quota or contingent laws, decrees, etc., inimical to any film interests 
have been promulgated during recent years. 



2487 



-66- 



CENSCRSHIP- 

Very strict. A censorship board reviews all pictures. Pictures are 
banned on the request of foreign Ministers accredited to the Government of 
El Salvador. Very strict on communistic and socialistic films. 

COMPETITION- 

The films shown are 90 percent American. 

Mexican, Spanish-speaking pictures are popular with the masses. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Convention at Mexico, January 27, 1902. 
PRODUCTION- 

None . The one company formerly operating, principally on news reels, has 
gone out of business. 

TAXES- 

On admissions: 

Tickets 15 to 24 centavos, tax 1 centavo. 
Tickets 25 ro 49 centavos, tax 2 centavos. 
Tickets 50 to 99 centavos, tax 3 centavos. 
Tickets 1 colon and over, tax 5 centavos. 

(2-2- centavos equal 1 U. S. cent). 

Taxes on performances vary with time of performance and locality. Maximum 
012 ($4.80); minimum 03.53 ($1.40). 

THEATERS- 

There are 29 theaters, seating 36,000. 

The average program consists of long feature, occasional comedy, news 
reel, usual total of 10 reels. 

There are about five releases each week, three to five performances daily 
in San Salvador. Most films are repeated numerous times at different hours. 
Films ordinarily are given one Sunday feature showing. American stars are 
preferred speaking the English language. Spanish talkies are second. Dubbed 
films are objectionable. 



2 487 



-67- 



SOUND- 



There are 27 theaters wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 



Positive sound 



120,682 ft 
1.696 ft 



$2, 117 
$21 



Negative sound 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



92,834 ft 



$1,015 



ESTONIA 



LEGISLATION- 

American motion picture films will be shown less in the next 12 months 
than heretofore, according to the import qaotas that the Government has al- 
lotted to motion picture distributors for the year that will end June 30, 1937. 
The quotas of the three principal distributors of American films were reduced 
by from 20 to 50 percent, although the total of all quotas remains about the 
same (220 for the 1936-37 year; 226 for the preceding 12 months) . 

The aim of the Government, it appears, is not so much to reduce imports 
of American films as to get the distribution of films in Estonia into the hands 
of Estonians. This does not mean marely Estonian citizens, but also persons of 
the Estonian race. The principal distributors in Estonia of American films are 
Estonian citizens, but their racial origin is not Estonian. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Under the film inspector of the Ministry of the Interior; films approved 
by the film inspector upon request by motion picture theater owners are fur- 
ther passed upon by the Estonian Ministry of Education and Social Welfare for 
its decision as to which particular films are fit and proper to be attended by 
minors. Advertising carries anaouiicement whether a film may or may not be 
attended by minors. 

COMPETITION- 

The films are 35 percent American; and 44 percent German. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Member of Berne Union. 



2487 



-68- 



PRODUCTION- 

One film laboratory in which local reviews are developed; operated by 
the endowment "Eesti Kulturfilm" at Tallinn. Mostly news reels and educational 
films. 

TAXES- 

High. The tax on film imports is computed on the basis of the data re- 
lating to the length of films as contained in the shipping documents accompany- 
ing the imported motion picture films; if in doubt, the film inspector shall 
have the right to check the data relating to the length of films. 

Motion Picture films which are not permitted to be imported shall be taxed 
at the rate of one-quarter of a cent per each meter length for control ex- 
penses. 

The tax, in case of foreign-made motion picture films, shall be payable 
at the time of the importation of such films into Estonia when applying for the 
grant of the import license, and, in the case of films produced in Estonia, at 
the time of presentation of such films for registration; in both cases the tax 
is payable by the applicant to the account of the motion picture film fund at 
the Ministry of the Interior. 

THEATERS- 

There are 58 theaters in operation in Estonia. 
SOUND- 

There are 55 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 93,678 ft. $1,554 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 105,108 ft. $1,500 
Negative sound 

FRANCE 

LEGISLATION- 

In this field the outstanding event of importance was the completion of 
the Franco-American trade agreement which went into effect on June 15, 1935. 



2487 



-69- 



In signing this agreement the French Government abandoned the proposals made 
earlier in the year to control and restrict the trade in foreign films and 
the exhibition of foreign films in France. Under the trade agreement the 
American film interests are protected to the extent that the present treat- 
ment is guaranteed and assurance is given that no new measures will be taken 
to place American films in a position less favorable than that nov/ enjoyed in 
comparison with French films or other foreign films. Assurance is further 
given that the present import duty, together with the valuations upon which the 
ad valorem duty is assessed, will not be increased. The reduction of the 
import tax from 6 percent to 2 percent was also applied to motion-picture 
films. 

A decree of May 7, 1936, established an export control over films in that 
it required that all films for export should receive the special export visa of 
the Cinema Control Service. The authorities were given the power to refuse 
this special export visa to any film whose presentation in foreign countries 
might be considered prejudicial to the French national interests. 

This export control measure was vigorously opposed by the French producers 
as well as by the American distributors, most of whom use Paris as a distribut- 
ing center for Europe. The combined opposition was so strong that the export 
control section of the decree was soon suspended and has not so far been re- 
sumed. 

During 1936 a very comprehensive report on the film situation was pre- 
sented to the National Economic Council. This report contained recommenda- 
tions for the reorganization of the motion-picture industry in France which, if 
adopted, would cause considerable difficulties for American film interests. 

During the year under review the French motion-picture industry, at the 
urgent instance of the present Government (Blum cabinet), organized in a 
fairly effective fashion. The new organization, known as the Confederation 
Generale de la Cinematographie, includes representatives from the principal 
groups representing all branches of the industry - production, distribution, 
technicians and raw material manufacturers, and exhibitors. There are, of 
course, still a few independents, but the Confederation, grouping the following 
organizations, includes the larger part of the industry: 

1. Chambre Syndicale des Industries Techniques de la 
Cinematographia- 

Includes all the technical branch of the indus- 
try, particularly the manufacturers of raw film. 

2. Chambre Syndicale de la Production de Films- 

French film producers. 



2487 



-70- 



3. Chambre Syndicale des Distributeurs de Films- 

The United States exhibitors are represented on 
this group. 

4. Union des Chambres Syndicales des Theatres Cine- 
matographiques- 

The exhibitors group. 

There was no change during the year in the regulations covering non-flam 
films. 

CENSORSHIP- 

A decree of May 7, 1936, consolidated the censorship pov/ers held by the 
French Government. The decree included a provision whereby foreign pro- 
ducers and distributors risked the loss of their French market if any of 
their films (even though exhibited out::ide of France) should not meet with 
the approval of the French censorship board. 

Another feature of the decree was that it required that films must be 
submitted for the approval of the Cinema Control Commission at least 80 days 
before their public presentation. This requirement was entirely normal, as in 
the past the French authorities were often allowed insufficient time to review 
a film before its presentation. 

It is also of interest to note that in connection with the tightening of 
the censorship, the censorship regulations are now applied to news reels, the 
police power having previously been exercised by the Ministry of the Interior. 

It is reported that representatives of all the most important Ministries 
review news reels before they are released and make suggestions for cuts.' It 
has happened that, after the news reels have been released and the reaction 
of the public to certain items has been unfavorable, further cuts have been 
requested and obtained by the interested Ministries. 

COMPETITION- 

Araerican films still lead all other foreign films in France in popularity, 
with a preference for original versions (with subtitles) in the first-run 
theatres of Paris and in a few of the resort centers. Dubbed versions are, 
however, generally used in the provincial houses. 

German films have lost ground very rapidly until it is rare to see a 
real German film even in Paris. A few Austrian films (original versions) 
have had a considerable success at one Paris theater (Etoile Cinema), and a 
few Russian films have been shown with varying success. 



2487 



-71- 



Thsre is a growing tendency throughout France to put cn double featuree 
programs. This is generally not the case with the first-run houses, but in the 
second-run theaters of Paris, and very generally throughout the provinces, two 
feature films are shown on each program, and often news reels as well. 

CCPYRIGHT FELATICMS- 

Copyright relations under bilateral treaty of 1C18. 

PRCDUCTICK- 

It is reliably estimated that the production of moticn-picture films 
in France during 1936 will amount to around 125. In addition to the films 
entirely produced here, it is estimated that something like 1S8 foreign 
films were dubbed into French. 

The outstanding development in the industry during the year has been the 
progress and imprcvement of French film production. Large sums of money have 
been spent on French films, more interesting scenarios with a better inter- 
national value have been used, and, according to contacts in the industry, 
many of these French films have brought in very high receipts to the exhibi- 
tors, certainly much higher than during previous years. 

An increasing number of French-language films have been produced in 
German studios. In this case the producing companies and equipment are German 
and the principal actors are French. It is rumored that there is a movement 
on foot by the French producers to have the Government place some restriction 
on the importation of these German-made French-language films, their contention 
being that French original versions should be made in France. Under the pre- 
sent liberal governcent the influence of the workers' organizations is stronger 
than under previous ministries, and it is possible that the next Franco-German 
film treaty may contain measures modifying the present regulations. 

TAXES- 

The following is the text of decree concerning the taxes: 

Article 1. 

Fourth paragraph of article No. 474 of indirect taxes is changed by the 
following one: 

Motion-Picture Theaters. - Monthly taxes on the net receipts of the motion- 
picture theaters are, according to steps: 

2% up to 10,000 francs net monthly receipts. 

5% above 10,CC0, and up to 30,000 francs net monthly receipts. 



2487 



-72. 



10% above 30,000, and up to 50,000 francs net monthly receipts. 
15% above 50,000, and up to 100,000 francs net monthly receipts. 
20% above 100,000 francs net monthly receipts. 

Article 1. 

The rates of the tax on moving-picture theaters as fixed by Article 88 
of the decree of codification of December 23, 1826, and 47 of the law of 
April 16, 1930, is amended as follows: 

2% up to 10,000 francs net monthly receipts. 

5% above 10,000, and up to 30,000 francs net monthly receipts. 
10% above 30,000, and up to 50,000 francs net monthly receipts. 
15% above 50,000, and up to 100,000 francs net monthly receipts. 
20% above 100,000 francs net monthly receipts. 

Article 2. 

The second paragraph of Article 30 of the decree of codification of 
December 28, 1926, modified by Article 40 of the decree of July 19, 1S34, con- 
cerning fiscal readjustments, is redrafted as follows: 

"Tax rates are reduced 50% for music halls, bicycle races, moving-picture 
shows with the exception of the receipts included in the first category of 
taxes, cafes-concerts, dance halls at fairs, merry-go-rounds, and shooting 
galleries at fairs, operated or organized outside Paris, and, in all locali- 
ties, for amusement parks to which a general entrance fee is charged in addi- 
tion to the side-shows, as well as for concerts not given daily by musicians' 
associations or by societies subsidized by the State, by departments, or by 
communes to give concerts of classical music." Which means Cinemas outside 
Paris pay only 50 percent (half) of the tax rates of article 1. 

Article 3. 

Municipal towns will be allowed to reduce the so-called "Pauper taxes" 
on all kind of entertainments, provided they find some other way of getting the 
same money. 

Article 4. 

From the date of promulgation of the foregoing law, any contract having 
as object the showing in public of a moving-picture film will become binding 
upon the parties thereto only after the expiration of a 48-hour delay following 
the trade showing or the first public showing of such film. 

Paris 25 Juillet 1935. Signed 

ALBERT LEBRUN 

Signatures of Ministers. 



2487 



-73- 



THEATERS- 



There are approximately 4,100 motion-picture theaters In France. There 
has been an increasing popularity of the so-called news reel motion-picture 
houses. These theaters, with a program made up of news reels, short comic 
sketches, and short educational pictures have been springing up all over 
Paris, sponsored principally by two of the principal Paris evening dailies 
(Paris-£oir, and L'Intransigeant) . Their programs are interesting, occasion- 
ally varied by the introduction of a short feature picture, and the admission 
considerably less than in the regular motion-picture houses (3, 4, and 5 
francs, depending on the houses selected and the location) . 



SCUND- 



Approximately 3, SCO tneaters are wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1S35 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 

1236 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



7.575.430 ft. $167,183 
157.342 ft. $10,688 



6,483,355 ft. $139,668 
243,138 ft. $8,590 



FRENCH WEST INDIES 

LEGISLATION- 

So far as can be ascertained, there was no adverse film agitation in this 
market during the year. 

CENSCRSHIP- 

There appears to be no censorship practiced in this Colony although by 
decree of the President of France, dated Kay 16, 1935, and published in the 
Journal Official of Martinique on pages 405, 4C6, and 407 of the issue of 
June 15. 1935, there is established a censorship of films and a commissicn 
composed of the Secretary General of the Colony, or his delegate; the Prose- 
cutor cf the Cclcny or his delegate; a representative of the Ccmmandant of the 
trccrs; a representative of the Chief of Public Instruction; and the President 
of an organization kncwn as the "Syndicate d' Initiative". There is no record 
extant of any films being refused censorship, and children of all ages are 
admitted to theaters at any time there is a showing. 



2467 



-74- 



CCMPETITION- 

French and American films. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

French laws apply. 
PRODUCTION- 

There is no production in Martinique or the island colony of Guadeloupe. 
TAXES- 

Moderate; vary according to locality, city, and town. 
THEATERS- 

There are 11 theaters in Martinique with an estimated seating capacity of 
8,000. These are located in the following cities: Fort-de France 3, Lamentin 
2, Vauclin 2, Trinite 2. All other towns cn the island have two buildings 
where pictures are shown. All theaters have two or three showings a week, and 
no theaters are properly wired for sound. Admission prices in the cities 
range from Frs. 5.00 to Frs. 15.00 and in the smaller towns and villages from 
Frs. 3.00 to Frs. 10.00 (a Fr. is equal to $0.0666 American currency). In the 
cities and larger towns where prices of admission are higher, the program 
consists of one news reel and one feature picture. Sunday nights when there 
is an increase in the prices a short comedy is included. In the low-price 
villages only one picture is shown. Feature pictures are shown twice, usually 
at the 6 p.m. showing and again at the 9 p.m. performance. The picture then 
starts its trip around the island to the different towns and villages and 
after showing 1 day in each town is returned to Fort-de-France where it is 
again shown for 1 day. It is then sent around the island for one or two show- 
ings and this moving about is repeated several times or until it is worn out. 
Of course if the demand for a picture is enough to warrant repeated showings 
in each city or village, it is shown until the demand ceases. 

Favorite type of picture: It would appear that any picture is acceptable 
just so long as French is used, the accepted language of the Island. American 
films, "dubbed" in French are not objected to by the theatergoers. The amount 
of the tax on each admission is included in the cost of the ticket and it 
varies according to the locality and the city and town. 

The foregoing remarks concerning Martinique apply equally to the industry 
as established in Guadeloupe with the following exceptions: There are two 
motion-picture houses, similar to those established in Martinique, operating in 
Pointe-a-Pitre ; and it is assumed that each town and village on the Island 
has at least one place where films are shown. 



2487 



-75- 



SOUND- 



There are 15 theaters wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1S35 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



23,239 ft. 



$325 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



88.927 ft. 



$1,692 



FINLAND 



LEGISLATION- 

None . 
CENSORSHIP- 

The censorship of motion-picture films is provided for by three decrees 
issued by the Government on October 30, 1S35. The first decree itemizes the 
type? Z- films which shall not be approved for exhibition. The second decree 
provides for the appointment, by the Ministry of Education, of a Government 
Film Censorship Bureau (in Finnish, Valtion Filmitarkastamo ) comprising one 
film censor and three associates who are charged with reviewing films intended 
to be exhibited publicly and stipulating the class of amusement taxes appli- 
cable when the particular film is exhibited. All expenses of the Censorship 
Bureau are borne by the Finnish Cinema Association (in Finnish, Sucmen 
Eiograafiliitto ) . The third decree provides for the formation of a Government 
Film Commission (in Finnish, Valtion Filmilautakunta) of five persons appointed 
by the Ministry of Education to render final judgment, at the request of the 
owner of the film and at the owner's expense, on any film prohibited by the 
Censorship Bureau from being exhibited. 

CCMPETITION- 

During 1935 features v/ere 65 percent American; short subjects, 55 percent 
American, 30 percent domestic. 



2487 



-76- 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright laws were enacted in Finland on June 3, 1927, and modified by 
the law of January 31, 1930. Finland entered into reciprocal copyright rela- 
tions with the United States on Decemter 8, 1934, effective January 1, 1929. 
On April 1, 1928, Finland became a member of the Berne copyright convention cf 
November 13, 1908. 

PRODUCTION- 

There were 6 features and 186 short subjects produced in 1935. About 8 
features were produced in 1936. 



According to the law of December 21, 1932, effective January 15, 1333, 
motion-picture films exhibited in Finland are subjected to the following taxa- 
tion: 

(a) Art films, 15 percent of admission charge. 

(b) Other films, 30 percent of admission charge. 

If a minimum of 200 meters of domestically produced film is exhibited at 
a performance the tax shall be reduced by 5 percent. In practice, therefore, 
exhibitions of films in the art class are taxed 10 percent and other films 25 
percent, as 200 meters of Finnish film are usually shown at every performance. 



There are 220 theaters in Finland. There are in addition 7 ambulatory 
theaters . 

SOUND- 

There are 210 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



THEATERS- 



1935 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



734,134 ft. 
46,210 ft. 



$15,037 
$1,466 



1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



685,320 ft. 
14,200 ft. 



$15,872 
§300 



2487 



GERMANY 



LEGISLATION- 

The industry continued under about the same regulations as during the 
previous year; (1) The Film Bank continued as part of the Film Chamber. This 
bank was instituted in order to provide reputable producers with the necessary 
capital for production at moderate interest rates, and to replace the previous 
system of film financing which operated without discipline and at heavy costs 
to borrowers. (2) The single-feature £how is now general throughout the 
country. (3) The fixation of minimum entrance prices in order chiefly to 
eliminate cutthroat competition among cinemas operating in the same localities, 
but also to provide preferential admissions for members of the uniformed ranks, 
the unemployed, etc. (4) Exhibitors remained organized into a single body 
within the Film Chamber, which has already accomplished much to correct the 
earlier system of sharp practices and irregularities. Whereas the greatest 
charge against the German industry in recent years has been its instability, 
its plethora of "fly-by-night" producers and "bad-pay" exhibitors and the 
consequent exorbitant cost of borrowed money, the supervision of the industry 
by the Film Chamber under the close surveillance of the Ministry of Propaganda 
gives evidence, in theory at least, of correcting these major faults. (5) The 
obligation to show, together with every standard feature film one culture film 
of at least 300 m length, in order to promote German culture film production. 
Educational and propaganda films are also being promoted. (6) In order to 
better utilize the studios and to employ the actors equally throughout the 
whole year, the Reichsfilmkammer has ruled that one-half of the film production 
must be completed by the beginning of the film season (July) and the other 
half by the beginning of October. 

On July 1, 1S36, new contingent regulations were issued. On the whole, 
the wording of these is practically the same as that of the old ones, but the 
few alterations made are of great importance. Although the United States is 
not explicitly mentioned in these regulations, they are undoubtedly directed 
against the American film industry. 

It will be recalled that foreign feature films are admitted into circu- 
lation in Germany either against internal contingent licenses or external con- 
tingent licenses. The first are earned by distributors in proportion to do- 
mestic production released, and the second by producers in proportion to the 
receipts from German films shown abroad. Internal licenses are nontransfer- 
able, while the export licenses may be transferred. After considerable effort 
on the part of American film companies, the Ministry of Propaganda lowered the 
price for export contingent licenses in 1935 from EM 20,000 to KM 10, COO. 
A further reduction is granted if a foreign feature film is dubbed in Germany, 
the price of the contingent license being decreased according to the dubbing 
costs, (the latter including actors' salaries, studio costs, costs of German 
film material, etc.). For the first FM 20, COO of dubbing costs the license 



2487 



-78- 



price will be lowered by RM 1,000, and for every additional RM 5,000, by 
another RM 1,000. When the contingent certificate is transferred, the American 
firm in question has to pay the seller of the license the sum of RM 5,000, the 
balance being determined with the Contingent Office after the dubbing costs 
have been fixed. In a few exceptional cases, especially where films are either 
technically interesting or for political reasons suitable for Germany, the 
Ministry of Propaganda has the ^-ight to grant the foreign film producers an 
import license without fee. 

The American excha".ges for the most part bring their feature product to 
the market against export licenses and have for the past few years used very 
few of the internal licenses. It appears that with the internal license Amer- 
ican producers have not always been satisfied with the way in which their 
product was handled by German film renters, who in most cases are closely 
connected with German producers. 

In spite of the reduction in the cost of a contingent license, the high 
price in effect places the German market for Amarican films in the prohibitive 
class. The regulations concerniag the use of blocked marks have also been con- 
siderably strengthened. All these difficulties will eventually force a deci- 
sion from the American companies, as to whether they will participate to a 
greater extent in domestic production by producing locally themselves or by 
distributing locally made products, or whether they will entirely withdraw from 
the country. 

CENSORSHIP- 

In order to meet the demands of the Nazi moral cod^, censorship has been 
greatly intensified and is most vexatious to film importers, particularly to 
Americans. As has been officially declared, the aim of German film politics 
is to import American super films, but, on the other hand, to exclude average 
American films from competition with the German product. The precensorship, 
under the direction of the Ministry of Propaganda, through the inspection of 
films prior to their submittal to the Board of Censorship, or the reading of 
manuscripts or scenarios by the office of the Film Critic of the Ministry, is 
considered in the trade to have slowed up the machinery of producxion, the more 
so as it serves to increase the Ministry's arbitrary control over the industry. 
Sometimes, however, it is advantageous in that it obviates difficulties with 
the Board of Censors by aiding producers and distributors to determine the 
types of film and story tnat the German public may be expected to appreciate, 
and, consequently, the German censors to approve. The apparent severity of 
the censorship policy would indicate a market supply of domestic films of 
distinct national character. 

Under the film law, censorship is now centered in Berlin alone, instead 
of Berlin and Munich, as formerly. 



2487 



-79- 



Contingent licenses are no longer sacrificed whea films to which they 
were a^^plied, are rejected by the censors. 

co:.:petition- 

On the basis of official cersorship figures, 211 features were shown dur- 
ing 1S35, of which S4 were German, 50 American, and 67 "other fceign" films. 
Du''ing the previous year, the total was 136 including 122 Gorman, 37 American, 
and 37 "other foreign" films. Thus during 1335, foreign films accounted for 
53.2 percent of the total market savply as against 37.8 percent during the 
previous year. 

During the 1S35-36 film soason, there were 187 first-runs in Berlin, as 
against 188 in the previous season. Of the 1935-36 total, 108 included films 
of German origin, o5 of American origin and 44 of "other foreign" origin. 
As ccapared with the previous season, there was an increase of 4 in German 
first-runs and a decline of 5 in American. It is noteworthy, that domestic 
production made up 57.7 percent of the Berlin first-run market in 1335-36, 
American features 18.7 percent and "other foreign" 23.6 percent. Germany's 
annual -equireaents fcr standard feature films ainount to approximately 250. 
In ccr.sequence of both decree..- :d domestic production and import difficulties, 
this normal need has not been satisfied since 1333. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The antici'^:ated Government action in regard to copyrights has not so far 
been taken. It ai-pears, however, that no important cl.anges in existing la,w and 
practice are to be expected. The committee to consider the principles in- 
volved and make recommendations, has concluded that: (1) Only the author 
is entitled to copyright, and according to the general principle of German 
copyright the author is the one who wrote tho story. (2) On the other hand 
the right to exploit the film, including reproduction, distribution, public 
performance, translation, synchronization, etc., is held to belong exclusively 
to the producer. This is in accordance with regulations already in force, 
but in the new interpretation the producer's right is based, not as hitherto 
on copyright, but on a newly defined rif,ht of exploitation "Vcrwertungsrecht" . 
The right to proceed against persons who through alteration, mutilation, or 
insertion spoil the film, belongs formally to the author, but in practice would 
be actually exerted by the producer. 

As compensation for the rights of the composer of the musical score, 
an amount is to be paid, according to the seating capacity of the theater, 
of between RM O.SO and RM 1.30 per seat per annum, or about 1 percent of 
gross receipts. 



2487 



-80- 



PRODUCTION- 



P roduction during the last 2 years 



1934 



Number Length (in meters) 



Long feature films 

Short feature and educational films 



129 



314,345 
554,007 



1,891 



TOTAL 



2,020 



868,352 



1935 



Long feature films 

Short feature and educational films 



130 



315,510 
509,127 



2,072 



TOTAL 



2,202 



824,637 



The number of film producers declined from 83 in 1928 to 49 in 1933, 
and the number of distributors from 41 to 22 during the same period. This 
decrease was due partly to the elimination of "non-Aryan" films. During the 
past season the program of eliminating from the German film industry all per- 
sons classified as "unreliable" or "un-German" was brought to completion and 
as a result, membership in the distributors' association was reduced to two- 
thirds that of the previous year and other branches of the industry were simi- 
larly affected. 

Production costs, including the costs for culture film and news reel, 
though difficult to determine are estimated to have reached RM 50,000,000 
(about $20,000,000 at RM 2.50) as against an estimated total of RM 30,000,000 
(about $12,000,000) in 1933. During 1935, the average production cost of a 
feature film is said to have been approximately $160,000 as against $120,000 in 
1934. In exceptional cases, however, especially if the film is destined for 
export, production costs are as much as $320,000. Star salaries, in general, 
do not exceed 25 percent of the total production costs. 

German film producers suffer from a lack of sufficient capital. In most 
cases, the producer himself has only a small part of the money necessary for 
the production of a new film and the means of the Film Credit Bank are not 
sufficient to cover his need. The producer must, therefore, rely more and 
more on the financial support of the distributors, who v/ill, on their part, 
have to borrow some of the money required from the picture-theater owners. 
Thus it happens that distributors, as well as theater owners, have gained a 
tremendous influence over the production of films and the selection of actors. 

Production costs average RM 160-180 a meter of long feature film and 
about RM 10 a meter for cultural films. During the past 2 or 3 years produc- 
tion costs have increased by 70 to 80 percent, while domestic receipts have 



2487 



-81- 



risen by only 30 to ^.0 ^;eroent and export inccvao has heavily declined. This 
has resulted in a serious decrease in the earning power of the whole Geraan 
film industry in consequence of which there was a deficit for the past season 
estimated at between RM 8,000,000 ani R.M 10.000.000. 

Distributors' tarn-over in lc35 amounted to ^28, 000, 000 as compared with 
525,600,000 in 1934. 

The output of German copying studios during the season 1335-36 is es- 
timated at about 10,000,000 meters of negatives ard 60,000,000 meters of pos- 
itives of standard films, to which must be added narrow gauge film for educa- 
tional purposes and for amateurs, which is growing in importance. 

American production in Germany was practically nil, its efforts for the 
most part being confined to dubbing. 

Distribution is usually made on a percentage basis with a minimum guaran- 
tee. The average terms are 30 to 35 percent of gross receipts less compensa- 
tion tax and no distincticn is made between the German and the foreign films. 
In exceptional cases films are rented at a fixed price, especially to very 
small cinema owners. 

TAXSS- 

The so-called amusement tax makes up 15 percent of the entrance fee and is 
generally absorbed by the film renter. For a film that has been qualified as 
"valuable from a cultural or political viewpoint", this tax is reduced by the 
proportion which the qualified film strip bears to the total length of all 
films shown. As in every performance a qualified culture film has to be shown, 
the tax is reduced in any case to at least 12 percent. When the feature film 
and the news reel are also qualified the tax is further diminished ard may even 
be entirely elimiV'.ated . During the past year the amustment tax averaged 7.5 
percent. For the 1S35-36 season, box-office receipts are estimated at RM 
230,000,000 and the a"usement tax at RM 17,000,000. For the preceding year 
the respective figures were RM 205,000,000 and RM 15,000,000. 

THEATERS- 

According to the latest statistical compilation there were 5,273 film 
theaters, with a total of 1,933,059 seats, in Germany at the beginning of the 
film season 1936-37. Of the 5,273 theaters, 2,227 had a seating capacity of 
2Z0 or less: 2,127 theaters had a capacity of from 500 to 900, and 194 theaters 
of more than 900. The capacity of the German film theaters appears to fce uti- 
lized to only about one-third, in spite of the increase in the number of visi- 
tors. The number of persons employed in the film industry is estimated at 
51,500, of which about 23,000 are employed in production, 3,500 in distribu- 
tion, i-iiport and export, and 19,000 in cinemas. The capital invested in German 
film theaters is estimated at around 3^180,000,000 or about $93 for every seat. 



2487 



-82- 



SOUND- 

In 1836 all but two cinemas were fitted with sound film apparatus, while 

in 1934 there were still 420 theaters without such equipment. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1S35 - Positive sound 1,384.723 ft. $47,524 

Negative sound 74,471 ft. 34,879 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 304,442 ft. $ 7,311 

Negative sound 49,129 ft. $ 1,551 



GREECE 

LEGISLATION- 

Motion-picture films have been one of the few items of interest to the 
United States which were exempt from quotas and other import restrictions, 
and American films accounted for fully 75 percent of total Greek film imports 
during 1936. An end to this freedom v/as made by the import regulations which 
became effective on January 1, 1937. 

The new regulations limit film imports to 210 corsplete pictures every 
6 months; 150 of these are to be pictures suitable for exhibition in first- 
run houses in Athens and the remaining 60 are to be "action" films (murder, 
mystery, detective, cowboy, etc.) suitable for exhibition in second-run or 
"popular" theaters charging low admission fees. The 210 feature films will 
be distributed among established film importers on the basis of their average 
annual importations during the period May 1832 through May 1936. 

News reels and shorts of not more than 350 meters in length are unrestric- 
ted and remain on the free list (group A). 

An additional burdensome requirement placed on local film exchanges 
by the new regulations is that in clearing a feature film through customs 
they will be required to file with the authorities a declaration stating 
the name of the theater for which the film is intended. This requirement not 
only eliminates the possibility of importing films and then negotiating the 
sale of their exhibition rights but also places film importers more or less 
under the control of the theater owners, inasmuch as no films may be imported 
unless previously contracted for. 

The new system also will affect adversely the business of film exchanges 
established recently, because of the requirement that average 1932-36 imports 



24S7 



-83- 



are to be used as a basis of allocating the global quota of 210 pictures. 
Newly established but promising firms on this basis will receive only a 
small share while older and sorae.vhat moribund importers will be favored. 

For films imported from countries such as Germany, which have official 
clearing arrangeoients with Greece and a trade balance in favor of the latter, 
the payment of drafts covering royalties and prints is effected without diffi- 
culty. When the clearing account shows a debit balance, however, as is the 
case with Czechoslovakia and Austria, payment is delayed by settling drafts in 
chronological order as funds become available in the clearing accounts. Im- 
ports from countries such as France, which are subject to private barter, 
require payment by means of clearing exchange derived from the exportation of 
Greek products. Such private barter transactions usually involve the payment 
of a premium by the importing firm to the holder of the clearing exchange per- 
mit. In the case of the United States and England, foreign exchange in 
settlement of the value of imported films (including royalties) is made avail- 
able in two ways. On films purchased outright and imported by local exchanges 
for their own account, payment for prints and distribution rights in foreign 
currency may be effected either by means of a letter of credit or by sight 
draft attached to shipping documents and presented through a local bank. In 
the case of films imported by the local branches of foreign producing or 
distributing organizations, where the royalties are determined by the proceeds 
from the exhibition of each individual film, remittances in foreign currency 
are authorized upon application after the books of the local branch have been 
audited by the Bank of Greece. Due consideration is given to the working 
agreements between local branches and their head offices in the matter of 
royalty payments. 

Foreign shippers are required to sign and mail direct to the Invoice 
Control Commission at the Greek port of destination the original invoice cov- 
ering each shipment to be cleared through Greek customs. A signed copy of the 
same invoice must be mailed to the Greek consignee for presentation by him to 
the Invoice Control Commission for purposes of comparison and verification. 
For the city of Athens original invoices must be mailed to the Commission de 
Controle de Factures, 6 University Avenua, Athens, Greece. For other cities 
the title of the Commission in French and the naae of the port of destination 
will be sufficient address. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Ccntrolled by the Public Morals Division of the Police Department. Exist- 
ing regulations provide that children under 16 years of age may not be admitted 
in motion picture theaters unless the film shown has been approved by the 
censors as suitable for children and adults. Hov.-ever, this regulation is al- 
most never strictly enforced. Censorship is particularly rigid on communistic 
propaganda, but rather lenient in other respects. 



2487 



-84- 



COMPETITION- 

At present American films control about 70 perctnt of the Greek trade. 
This includes films dubbed or produced in the European studios of American pro- 
ducers. Society dramas and musical comedies appeal to the more prosperous 
classes of the population, but there is also a fairly good market for American 
"action" films among the so-called "popular" theaters. English not being 
very widely understood, French versions of American films are preferred where 
dubbing can be done well and appropriately; many films, of course, lose- too 
much of their character when dubbed, and English is sufficiently intelligible 
to a Greek audience to be preferable to French in such cases. German pro- 
ducers lead in the field of operetta or musical comedy, while certain French 
society dramas have been quite successful in recent years. Historical films 
are of comparatively minor interest. During the 1S35-36 season (October-May) 
a total of 323 feature films were released in Greece. Of these 232 (72%) 
were American, 43 (13%) German, and 32 (10%) French. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Under the reciprocal copyright protection agreement signed between Greece 
and the United States on January 27, 1S32, American films receive full pro- 
tection. No films are allowed to be exhibited unless it is proved that they 
were duly imported through customs and that the necessary import duties and 
t axes were paid. 

In September 1835 the Greek Government established a Bureau of Educational 
Cinematography under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Public Instruction. 
In October 1936 Swiss and Austrian 16-mm projection equipment was purchased and 
a call for tenders was issued to supply educational films. The Greek Govern- 
ment also ratified the International Convention on Educational Films whereby 
customs franchise is extended to films used for instruction. 

PRODUCTION- 

Confined to news and advertising reels. There are no studios. 
TAXES- 

On tickets costing up to 8 drachmas, 25 percent; over 8 drachmas, 30 per- 
cent. (The drachma is about $0,009.) 

The import duty on positive films, including all surtaxes, amounts to &7-|- 
drachmas per kilogram or approximately 36^ per pound. In addition there is a 
1^ percent turn-over tax payable at the time or entry, which is calculated on 
the basis of (1) the landed cost of prints (including import duty and sur- 
taxes) and (2) the royalty value or distributioTi rights. For the assessment 
of the turn-over tax the distribution rights have been fixed by ministerial 



2487 



-£5- 



decision at l.COO ^old dollars ($1,6S0) for feature films intended for ex- 
hibition in first-run house and at ICO gold dollars ($169) for cheaper films 
generally exhibited in "popular" or second- and third-run houses. 

TKEATERS- 

According to a census taken in March 1S36 there were 153 moticn-picture 
theaters in operation throughout Greece. During the hot summer months all 
indoor theaters close down for lack of air-conditioning facilities, while at 
the same time a large number of outdoor theaters are started using the pro- 
jection and sound equipment of the indoor houses. The aggregate seating 
capacity of all the regular theaters is estimated at about 70,000. There are 
six first-run houses in Athens totaling 8,000 seats. Three more large motion- 
picture theaters are under construction in Athens which are expected to be 
ready for operation before the end of 1S36. When completed these new theaters 
will increase the seating capacity of the first-run houses in Athens to ap- 
proximately 13.000. 

SOUND- 

About 140 theaters are wired for sound. The equipment used in the pro- 
vincial theaters is mostly assembled in Greece from imported and locally 
made parts. Practically all sound systems used can reproduce sound on film 
and disc. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES-" 

1935 - Positive sound 1,219.561 ft. $30,115 
Negative sound 

1S36 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 1.134.606 ft. $25,381 
Negative sound 

GUATEMALA 

LEGISLATICN- 

fhere is no adverse legislation in Guatemala governing the motion-picture 
industry. 

CENSORSHIP- 

At present there is no Censorship Board acting in Guatemala, although 
the Chief of Police reserves the right to prohibit the showing of any picture 
that he sees fit. 



2487 



-86- 



COMPETITION- 

Seventy-five to eighty percent of the films shown in Guatemala are 
American . 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright relations remain the same as previously reported. 
PRODUCTION- 

There is no film production in Guatemala. 



Fifteen percent of gross theater receipts are turned over to the Govern- 
ment for public charities under the Beneficencia Publica. Duties and other 
taxes remain the same as previously reported. 



There are 31 theaters operating in Guatemala with a seating capacity of 
about 18,000, admission prices ranging from 10 to 50 cents. 

Distributors of American films in Guatemala continue to complain of the 
competition from Spanish-speaking pictures. It is reported that American films 
are being pushed slowly out of all of the smaller towns, now that Mexican 
pictures are becoming more available, and that one of the three first-class 
theaters of Guatemala City is showing about 65 percent Spanish-speaking pic- 
tures. The smaller theaters of this city, like those of the small towns, are 
showing all the Spanish-speaking pictures obtainable in preference to American 
productions. It is known that the first-class theater now showing 65 percent 
Spanish-speaking pictures has purchased 65 Spanish films for next year, 20 of 
which are said to be of Argentine production and the remainder Mexican. There 
have been relatively few Argentine productions exhibited in Guatemala hereto- 
fore . 



Of the 31 theaters mentioned above, 25 are wired for sound pictures. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



1935 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



1,037,630 ft. 
35,000 ft. 



$14,470 
$ 2,000 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



969,511 ft. 



$13,425 



2487 



-87- 



HAITI 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no legislation adverse to the introduction of motion pictures 
in Haiti. 

CENSORSHIP- 

According to the censorship law of July 12, 1935, those pictures which 
are found to be inadmissible to children under 18 years of age must be so ad- 
vertised on the motion-picture billboard, the children of this age must be re- 
fused admittance. The Department of Interior is given the power to censor 
films which are considered to be immoral or dangerous to the maintenance of 
internal order. Anyone who does not comply with the regulations laid down is 
subject to a fine of from $100 to $500. 

COMPETITION- 

Films are 40 percent American and 60 percent French. 

French pictures have gained immensely in this market during the last year. 
The above percentages are based on weight of films imported. If value is 
taken, the percentages are about 20 for American and 80 for French. The lan- 
guage question is believed to be the principal factor in favor of French films. 
There is no objection to dubbed films if they are in French. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright protection is not available in Haiti. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is not, nor has there been, any production of motion pictures in 
Haiti. 

TAXES- 

A tax of 10 percent is imposed on theater admissions. 
THEATERS- 

There are 8 theaters in Haiti. Admission prices range from 10 to 60 
cents. Dramas are preferred, but musical comedies are also well received. 
American 'slap-stick" comedy is neither understood nor appreciated. 



2487 



-88- 



SOUND- 



Six theaters are wired for. sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



506,015 ft. 



$ 5,183 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



289,247 ft. 



$ 2.265 



HONDURAS 



LEGISLATION- 

There have never been any quota or contingent laws, decrees, etc., issued 
in Honduras restricting the importation of motion-picture films. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Regulations exist in the Republic of Honduras by virtue of Executive 
Resolution No. 1960 of March 29, 1928. This regulation provides that the 
Governor of each Department of the Republic shall have a board of censors to 
operate in his jurisdiction. While the regulation is closely followed in most 
districts, it is less rigidly followed in others. 

COMPETITION- 

Of the motion pictures exhibited in the Republic of Honduras, 15 percent 
are Mexican and European, and the others are American. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Inter-American Copyright Conventions, Mexico City and Buenos Aires, 
January 2. 1902, and August 11, 1910. Ratified July 13, 1914, and April 9, 
1914. 

PRODUCTION- 

No production in Honduras. 
TAXES- 

Municipal taxes vary from 5 to 10 lempiras per day whether the theater 
has one or more performances. 



2487 



-89- 



THEATERS- 

There are 29 theaters in Honduras, although only 21 are in operation at 
the present time. 

SCUND- 

All of the 29 theaters are wired for sound. 
IKPORTS FRCM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 33,060 ft. $508 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 
Negative sound 

HUNGARY 

LEGISLATION- 

According to Decree No. 2670/1932, dated May 10, 1932, the duty on films 
imported into Hungary is 250 gold crowns (1 gold crown equals $0,343 present 
£old basis and about $0,223 at the prevailing commercial rate through the 
National Bank of Hungary) per 100 kilograms (220 pounds) plus 6 percent phase 
turn-over tax. "Import certificates" for sound films cost ICO pengo (1 pengo 
equals $0.2961 present gold basis and about $0.1925 at the prevailing commer- 
cial rate) for films less than 200 meters in length, 200 pengo if between 201 
and 400 meters, 400 pengo between 401 and 800 meters, 600 pengo between 801 
and 1,200 meters, and 1,000 pengo for all others. Silent films require no 
import certificates. The same decree ordered that for the benefit of the 
Hungarian film fund an additional fee of 20 fillers must be paid on each 
meter of censored and approved film for which the Hungarian titles were pre- 
pared in Hungary, and on those for which the Hungarian titles were prepared 
abroad, 30 fillers per meter must be paid. By Decree No. 5710/1933 M. E. 
dated May 26, 1933, the second-mentioned fee was increased from 30 to 50 
fillers. In further modification of the original decree. Decree No. 8484/1934 
M. E. dated September 29, 1934, taking effect on October 1, 1934, the fee for 
films for which the titles were prepared abroad, was increased from 50 fillers 
to 1 pengo per meter. The fee of 20 fillers, payable on foreign films for 
which the Hungarian titles are made in Hungary, was not affected by the sub- 
sequent modifications. In addition there is charged a regular censorship fee 
of 4 fillers per meter on films made in Hungary and 10 fillers per meter if 
made abroad. Weekly news, and educational and scientific films are exempt 
from all charges except censorship fee and import duty. Foreign-made equipment 



24,382 ft. $332 



2487 



-90- 



and supplies require special import permits issued by the Ministry of Commerce 
and Communication. 

Besides the foregoing, according to Decree No. 180,000/1935. B. M., 
importers of films are obliged to submit a censorship card for every film 
imported into the country. The money paid for these cards is used toward 
supporting the Hungarian film-producing industry. Up to July 1, 1936, the 
National Motion Picture Examining Committee (Orszagos Mozgokepvizsgalo Bizott- 
sag) issued seven censorship cards to each producer of a Hungarian feature 
film over 1,600 meters in length. Since August 1, 1936, according to Decree 
175,000/1936 B. M., firms producing such films receive eight censorship cards. 
These cards are bought and sold in the open market and their price depends 
upon supply and demand. At present the price varies between 1,800 and 2,000 
pengo each. Films which, in the opinion of the National Motion Picture Ex- 
amining Committee, qualify as of the highest type with regard to cultural 
and artistic merit, receive special premiums in the form of censorship cards. 
There are distributed annually not over 10 such cards to firms producing 
meritorious films. 

According to Decree No. 175,000/1936 B. M., importers of short films are 
also obliged to purchase a so-called "short censorship card". For the present 
there is to be submitted with every short film imported one short censorship 
card as the Decree orders the submission of a large censorship card only with 
films over 1,200 meters in length. The short film censorship cards are dis- 
tributed on the basis of Decree 175.000/1936 B. M., as follows: up to 200 
meters the producer receives 5 cards; from 201 to 400 meters, 10 cards; from 
401 to 600 meters, 15 cards; and over 600 meters, 20 cards. The value of the 
short censorship cards depends upon supply and demand the present price being 
between 150 and 170 pengo. Tt is rumored in trade circles that it is proposed 
to revise the Decree so that the number of short film cards to be submitted 
with imported films of less than 1.200 may be established on the basis of the 
length of the film. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Film censorship is under the direction of the Royal Hungarian Ministry of 
the Interior, the members of the Censorship Board being appointed by the 
Minister. Appeal can be taken from the Board's decision in the first, second, 
and third instances; the final appeal being to the Minister of the Interior. 
In most cases one of the appeal boards has permitted pictures, previously 
rejected by the Board, to be shown after certain changes had been made in sub- 
titles or after offending parts had been eliminated. Pictures are classified 
in two groups by the Board of Censors, viz, whether they may be shown univer- 
sally or only to persons over 16 years of age. 

Nonofficial censorship does not exist in Hungary. The pictures are cen- 
sored by the official Board solely with regard to public morals and the 
safety of the State. 



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There are no discriminations against American film companies and, in 
cases where rejections were deemed necessary, marked consideration has been 
shown by the authorities. 

During 1935, 974 films (916,968 meters) were censored, of which 910 (883,- 
716 meters) were sound and 64 (28,272 meters) were silent films. Of the total 
films censored 46 (90,787 meters), or 5 percent of the total, were rejected. 
Of the total sound films licensed for production 435 (43 percent) were Ameri- 
can, 146 (16 percent) German, 75 (8 percent) French, 5 (0,5 percent) Italian, 
33 (3.6 percent) British, 23 (2.4 percent) Austrian, 8 ( percent) Scandinavian, 
and 185 (20.5 percent) Hungarian. Of the silent films 2 (3.1 percent) were 
American, 13 (20 percent) German, 2 (3.1 percent) French, 4 (5.3 percent) 
Scandinavian, and 43 (67.5 percent) Hungarian. According to the subjects of 
the films, 521 were sound and 2 were silent feature films, 92 sound and 32 
silent educational films, 203 sound and 23 silent news reels, and 94 sound and 
7 silent advertising films. 

COMPETITION- 

The film production of Hungary during 1935 continued to be mainly of local 
importance. The expatriated German film production benefited Budapest to a 
certain extent and the same situation helped to maintain the American leader- 
ship. Five years ago German films held nearly 90 percent of the trade, but in 
1932 American films regained the ground lost, representing 55 percent of the 
films shown, and in 1933 advanced to 65 percent. In 1934 American films repre- 
sented 61 percent, and in 1S35 48 percent of the sound films and 4.6 percent 
of the silent films shown. The decrease in the percentage of American films 
shown is due principally to the development of the Hungarian film industry, 
the products of which have practically eliminated American films from the pro- 
vincial motion-picture theaters. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

A special convention signed October 13, 1913, gives copyright protection. 

PRODUCTION- 

There are tv^o Government controlled studios in Hungary producing films. 
During 1935 the Hungarian Film Bureau (Magyar Filmiroda) produced 4 sound fea- 
ture films (9,094 meters) 3 educational films (1,542 meters), and 52 news reels 
(12,000 meters). The Hunnia Film Studio working throughout the year produced 
16 feature films averaging 2,500 meters each, or a total of 40,000 meters. 
Eleven of the films produced were in Hungarian cnly, three in German and two 
in Hungarian and German. The cost of production varied from 110,000 to 800,000 
pengo per film. No figures are available concerning the cost of production of 
films produced by the Hungarian Film Bureau. To develop local production, the 
producers of Hungarian films may have the use of the Hunnia studio free of 



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charge, provided the Hungarian Film Industry Fund accepts the theme, in which 
case the Film Industry Fund pays the Hurnia 40 pengo per day for the use of 
the studio. 

TAXES- 

The amusement tax in first-run motion picture houses in Budapest between 
October 1 and April 30 is 6 percent of the total receipts if the seating capa- 
city is over 400 , and 5 percent if the seating capacity is under 400. Between 
May 1 and September 30 the amusement tax in theaters of over 400 seating capa- 
city is 3 percent, and if the capacity is under 400, 2 percent. In all other 
motion picture theaters with a seating capacity of over 600 the amusement tax 
is 5 percent and, if under 600, 4 percent between October 1 and April 30. The 
amusement tax in these theaters between May 1 and September 30 is 2 percent 
regardless of the seating capacity. In the provinces the amusement tax varies 
between 5 and 15 percent. The additional turn-over tax (national) is 3 per- 
cent. 

THEATERS- 

There are 410 motion-picture theaters in operation in Hungary during 1935. 

According to Decree No. 174.000/1936 B. M. , since August 31, 1936, first- 
run houses in Hungary may exhibit only one feature film of over 1,200 meters 
in length per performance. On weekdays first-run houses are permitted to give 
three performances and four on Sundays and holidays. A single performance may 
consist of not over 3,400 meters of film. The same decree forbids first-run 
houses to give half-price performances or to sell tickets at special rates. 
On the other hand other than first-run houses are permitted to show only one 
feature film at a single performance. Second-run and other motion-picture 
theaters in Budapest and the provinces may give four performances on weekdays 
and five on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays. The program may consist of 
3,800 meters of film. According to the decree all performances must end by 
12 o'clock midnight. 

Decree 174,000/1936 B. M. orders that every motion-picture theater em- 
ployee must have 1 free day each week which can not be exchanged for any con- 
sideration . 

SOUND- 

Of the above 410 theaters, 385 theaters are wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 1,418,296 ft. $32,290 
Negative sound 



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1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



1,222,277 ft. 
32,487 ft. 



$27,078 
$455 



INDIA 



LEGISLATION- 

The failure which met the Indian section of the Calcutta Press in its agita- 
tion against the construction of the Metro Theater in that city did not daunt 
the spirit of the Motion Picture Society of India, Bombay, a body representing 
the indigenous industry. As soon as it learned of the projected construction 
of another Metro Theater in Bombay, it staged an even stronger campaign of 
agitation through the press, direct representations to authorities, and public 
meetings, but the Government took the stand that the society could not inter- 
fere with fair and legitimate trade competition and the agitators were subdued. 

During the year there have been no films exhibited which have seriously 
aroused criticism either on the part of the Government or the Indian popula- 
tion, as was the case in connection with "India Speaks" and several other 
films of the past few years. 

CENSORSHIP- 

During the year several representations were made to the Board of Film 
Censors, as a result of which the foreign film industry has not only been 
able to get from the Board assurances of cooperation but definite concessions 
in the way of preservation of cuts made in a film for a period of 2 years be- 
fore destruction, and reduction of charges for advertising trailers to Rs. 3 
instead of Rs. 5 as in the past. Cuts were made in 19 films examined by the 
Bengal Board during the year ending March 31, 1S3S. 

During the year ending March 31, 1933, 1,198 films of 3,362,022 feet were 
certified by the Bengal Board representing 641 films, 1,528,085 feet American; 
408 films, 688,880 feet British; 8 foreign films, 10,055 feet; and 141 Indian 
films, measuring 1,135,022 feet. 

The bill to amend the Cinematograph Act to include the censorship of cine- 
ma posters is still before the Government and there are no indications . as to 
when it might be considered in the Assembly. There is considerable doubt among 
distributors that it will be passed. 

COMPETITION- 

During the fiscal year ending March 31, 1S36, about 73 percent by footage 
of the imported pictures were American. This figure is an estimate, as 



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inaccuracies are found in import statistics caused by reimportation of American 
films from Ceylon. The distribution arrangements for British pictures con- 
tinued to improve, and British pictures accounted for 24 percent during the 
above period. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Same as United Kingdom. 

PRODUCTION- 

In India there is no organization, official or private, which assembles 
data relative to the production of Indian films. It is understood that the 
Motion Picture Society of India recently issued a questionnaire to the various 
indigenous producing units, but the response it received was disappointing. 
According to the trade there are in India 25 native major producing companies. 
There are also 40 to 50 small producing concerns which may exist today and 
discontinue operations on the morrow. II is also estimated that there are at 
least 70 motion-picture producing concerns in South India alone and that this 
number is increasing rapidly. 

It is the general impression of the public that the quality of Indian 
films is steadily improving and several produced and exhibited during the 
past year, despite the local language difficulty, have attracted the dis- 
cerning attention and admiration of the European members of the public. 

During the period January to October 1936, a total of 396 Indian pictures 
with a total footage of 2,627,334 feet were examined by the Bombay and Calcutta 
Boards. During the same period of 1935 a total of 346 Indian pictures with a 
total footage of 3,101,314 were examined by these boards. No segregation is 
made between sound and silent films, but the trade reports that a larger 
proportion of the films censored were sound. 

TAXES- 

During the year under review, the Government of India withdrew the draw- 
back of seven-eights percent Customs duty which the foreign film industry 
was enjoying in the past as a fair and reasonable privilege. The Kinematograph 
Renters' Society made able representations to the Government, supported by 
statistics appealing for reconsideration of their decision, but to no avail. 
This action on the part of the Government, which is claimed by the Motion Pic- 
ture Society as being directly due to their initiative, is regarded as an 
additional imposition placed on the distribution of foreign films in this 
territory, including of course the existing excessive tariffs. 

The present rate continues to be 7 annas per foot on foreign exposed 
films. 



2487 



-95- 



The foreign film industry in this country has submitted its second peti- 
tion to the Governaent seeking at leas', a small measure of relief from the 
existing excessive tariffs and it is hoped that the Government will not dis- 
appoint the petitioners this time. 

THEATERS- 

There are 670 theaters now operating in India. 
SOUND- 

According to the trade, the number of theaters equipped for sound in 
India is 600. From this total there were 150 theaters showing exclusively 
American, British, and Continental pictures, 120 theaters showing mixed foreign 
and Indian films, and the remaining 330 theaters showing exclusively Indian 
films. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 4,933,945 ft. $34,802 

Negative sound 42,272 ft. $390 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 3,948,597 ft. $77,036 

Negative sound 4,375 ft. $247 



ITALY 

LEGISLATION- 

The importation of films into Italy is subject to ministerial licenses. 
In the administration of this system, as regards American films, it has been 
recently decided that for the year ending June 30, 1937, 250 American films 
may be imported. Hov/ever, the amount of money which can be exported for Amer- 
ican films pertaining to the said year's business is limited to 20 million 
lire. Amounts which will accrue to American companies in excess of 20 million 
lire must remain in Italy. 

Theaters are compelled by law to show one Italian picture for every three 
foreign films. 

All films must be dubbed in the Italian language, and such dubbing must be 
done in Italy. All films dubbed have to pay a tax of 30,000 lire for each film 
dubbed. Considerable opposition was attempted when the lav/ was under way, 
but distributors were and are compelled to comply with this regulation and 
to pay the tax. It is claimed that this measure was enacted to safeguard the 



2487 



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interests of dubbing studios and indirectly to provide v/ork for deserving ac- 
tors whom the moving pictures have thrown out of employment. 

Today there are nine dubbing studios in Italy and they are reported to 
be doing very high-grade work. 

Italian products are made with Italian capital, but where two or more 
versions are made, the foreign version is made in cooperation with foreign 
producers. 

The past year has seen no further development than took place in earlier 
years in the application of the quota law, passed in October 1927, requiring 
that one-tenth of the exhibition time be reserved for domestically produced 
film. The reason for this nonapplication still lies in the fact that domestic 
production has not yet reached a volume sufficient to require the enforcement 
of this legislation. 

An annual State allowance of 2 million lire for meritorious films is 
awarded each year. In the year 1935-36, out of 35 films produced, 21 received 
prizes . 

The ban on other than the Italian language in talking films is rigidly 
enforced, but singing sequences are permitted and the restriction does not 
apply to news reels. War and Russian subjects are still subject to severe 
scrutiny, and, in general, are not accepted. 

The following are the provisions of the Decree putting in effect newly 
created taxes upon "dubbed" films which became effective by Decree No. 1301, 
July 20, 1934. By this Decree the dubbing tax is payable in three install- 
ments: 10,000 lire before the granting of the permit to dub the film, and 
10,000 lire within 3 months and a further 10,000 lire within 6 months of 
issuance of permit. 

1. It imposes the obligation that all foreign films must be "dubbed" 
in Italy. 

2. It imposes a tax of 30,000 lire on each "dubbed" film. 

3. It grants producers of each film in Italy the right to "dub" three 
foreign films free of said tax. 

4. It obliges every cinema owner to show one Italian film for every 
three foreign films shown. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Censorship continues to be rigorous, though not unreasonable. The chief 
objection is that even after a file has passed the censors and been screened. 



2487 



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it can be objected to by any private citizen or organization, on complaint 
to the police, who have the power to review the film, and if deemed necessary 
or advisable, to order it off the screen. 

COMPETITION- 

About 65 percent of the films shown continue to be American, with the 
balance domestic, and German, French, English, and Austrian, all dubbed, 
the same volume. All foreign films are now projected in "dubbed" versions in 
Italy. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Protected by the Statute ana Regulations of November 17, 1925. 
PRODUCTION- 

There are four producing studios in Italy, the oldest being of course 
Cines, the ethers being as follows: Caesar, Rome; Tirrenia, Leghorn; Safar, 
Rome . 

While Cines uses American equipment, Caesar and Tirrenia use Klan2;rilm 
recorders. Safar uses Tobis equipment. 

The combined production of these studios is some 30 historical, patriotic, 
and farcical pictures. 

TAXES- 

Taxes on cinema tickets and on the operations of distributors remain 
high, but not higher in proportion than those on other types of entertainment 
or business in general. 

THEATERS- 

There are 4,800 theaters with a total seating capacity of 1,600,000. 
Theater prices range from lire 0.50 in the small towns to lire 12.00 in the 
first-run houses in the principal cities. This figure is occasionally in- 
creased to lire 15.00 where it is considered that the picture v/arrants it. 

Yearly box-office receipts are computed at more than 400 million lire. 
Of this total about 100 million lire is turned over to the producers, while 
70 million lire is collected by the Government for taxes. 

SOUND- 

There are now 2,800 theaters which have some sort of sound equipment, 
of which 11 percent have American equipment, the others being Italian with a 
few German and English machines. 
2487 



-98- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 



1,782,623 ft. 
406,793 ft. 



$40,321 
5,33,095 



Negative sound 



1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



1,134,941 ft. 
233,590 ft. 



$23,353 
$16,269 



JAMAICA 



LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws affecting the importation of motion-picture films, 
CENSORSHIP- 

Films are censored in Kingston for showing in the whole Island under 
Jamaica Law 14 of 1913, Jamaica Law 13 of 1925, and Jamaica Law 21 of 1926. 
Censorship is moderate and about 3 percent of the pictures are reTused 
each year. Pictures showing drunkenness or unconventional frivolity on the 
part of white people will not pass the censor. This is because of the large 
negro population. Pictures showing robberies and hold-ups are banned, since 
it is believed that they mignt have a bad impression on some of the lower 
classes, and might act as an incentive to c^-ime. 

COMPETITION- 

About 75 to 85 percent of the films shown come from the United States; 
the remaining 15 to 25 percent come from England. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Same as United Kingdom. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is no production of motion pictures in Jamaica. 



General property taxes and income taxes are imposed on theaters. There 
are no taxes on theater admissions. 



TAXES- 



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-99- 



THEATERS- 

There are 15 theaters in Jamaica having 12, SCO seats. Admission prices 
range from 6 pence ($0.12|-) to 1 shilling 6 pence (f0.36f). 

SOUND- 

All of the 15 thealars are v/ired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



83,421 ft. 
2,126 ft. 



$ 1,116 
$107 



1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



116,118 ft, 
10.000 ft, 



$ 1,043 
$150 



JAPAN 

LEGISLATION- 

Two important developments have taken place in the Japanese motion- 
picture market in recent months. Both developments are significant from the 
standpoint of American participation in this market. The first is the forma- 
tion of the American Motion Picture Association of Japan, while the second 
important development is linked up with the financial collapse of the Japan 
Motion Picture Co., Ltd., known locally as "Nikkatsu", oldest motion picture 
producing company in Japan. The "Nikkatsu" interests, which include working 
arrangements for exhibiting in a considerable number of theaters, were taken 
over by Shochiku Production. 

In general, the position of American films in the Japanese market was 
better during the first 10 months of 1S36 than was the case in 1935, duo 
partly to the difficulties of the "Nikkatsu" concern but mainly to a falling 
off in popularity of European films. The bulk cf the European films v.-ere of 
German origin and it is said that Nazi propaganda has been inserted into these 
pictures to such an extent that they are no longer to the taste of the Japanese 
including official and private entities. 

There are at present in Japan proper no quota or contingent laws, decrees, 
etc., inimical to the interests of American films. Such legislation may be 
forthcoming as a result of the drive for compulsory showing of educational 
films. 



2487 



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The question of establishing a censorship in Karafuto (Japanese Saghalien) 
is being discussed by the authorities, according to several American film 
distributors. Distributors and exhibitors are against such a plan on the 
basis that the censorship in Japan proper should be sufficient for this 
colony with its very limited population. 

In Chosen (Korea), regulations are in force v/hereby meterage of foreign 
films must not exceed two-thirds of the total meterage of the films screened 
in 1 month in one theater and the balance of one-third of meterage nust be 
supplied by Korean or Japanese pictures. In 1937, this ratio will be increased 
to one-half. No information is available regarding the production of motion 
pictures in Korea. 



The threat of legislation being enacted in the near future providing for 
compulsory showing of educational pictures and for the free showing of such 
pictures, tends to reduce attendance at houses showing foreign fims. Another 
threat is the development of the Toho-Nikkatsu producing and exhibition com- 
bine that will further limit the outlets for American pictures in this market. 



CENSORSHIP- 



No foreign or domestic films were banned by the censor during the first 
half of 1935. During that period a total of 391 feature films v/ere passed by 
the censor compared with 345 during the 1935 first half. The following table 
summarizes the feature films censored according to origin: 



First half of 1935 First half of 1936 



Japanese 211 231 

American 107 137 

European 27 23 

Total 345 391 



Of the 23 European films censored during the first half of 1936. 11 were 
of German origin, 8 French, 2 Austrian, and 2 Italian. 

Martial law which was put into effect after the February 26th Incident, 
was lifted in Tokyo during the summer and apparently, insofar as the censors 
are concerned at least, martial law is still in effect. Several American film 
distributors are reported to be keeping certain films, which should be smash 
hits under normal conditions but which now would probably be banned, in bonded 
warehouses pending less strict application of the censorship laws. The fact 
that no foreign pictures were banned during the first half of 1936 is indica- 
tive of the care and effort used by local distributors in selecting pictures 
for this market. It is obvious, also, that their respective home offices are 
interested in sending out only such films as will surely pass the censors 
either entire or with the least amount of mutilation. 



2487 



-101- 



COMPETITION- 

During the first 6 months of 1936, 35 percent of the films shown were 
Afflerican . 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Treaties of May 17, 1S03, October 11, 1908. 
PRODUCTICN- 

During 1935, 470 motion pictures were produced in Japan, of which 253 
were with sound and dialog, and 187 were silent. Shochiku Cinema Co. Ltd., 
produced during 1935 a total of 9S pict_res, the Shinko Cinema Co.. Ltd., a 
total of 55, and the Japan Motion Picture Co., Ltd., (Nikkatsu) 62 pictures. 
Other minor companies accounted for the remaining 227 pictures. Production 
during 1936 was estimated to be 496 features. 

Regarding the inability of domestic producers to make quality films, 
nothing much has transpired during 1936 that might cause an impartial observer 
to change or modify this statement although the entrance of the Toho-Nikkatsu 
combine into the field may stimulate superior output. The shorter hours for 
programs may also help producers to devote greater attention to quality than 
has heretofore been the case. 

From the popularity of foreign films, particularly American, with the 
theater-going public in the urban centers, it may be noted that the Japanese 
intelligentsia invariably prefer foreign films. They claim that the Japanese 
pictures are made for the uneducated masses, are juvenile in plot, are poorly 
directed and, save for rare exceptions, generally can not appeal to the middle 
and upper classes of society. It seems no exaggeration to say that the future 
of American films in this market hinges largely upon the fact that the edu- 
cated classes want them and will object strenuously to legislation curtailing 
their screening in Japan. Judging by reports, American films are maintaining 
their popularity with the public, but, indicated, they are suffering more 
from threat of increased and improved domestic production, a more complete 
tie-up of outlets by domestic producers and greater Governcant interest in 
the industry. 

TAXES- 

Taxes on theaters and theater admissions in Japan are extremely moderate. 
City and prefectural exhibition taxes, paid by the theater owners as part of 
operating expense, approximate 2 percent of gross receipts. The taxes, and 
methods of assessing the taxes, vary from city to city. In Tokyo, for in- 
stance, the prefectural tax is the cost important and amounts to Yen 8.00 per 
Yen 1,000 received. To this total a sum amounting to 144 percent (of the Yen 
8.00) is added, making a total of Yen 19.52 per Yen 19.52 per Yen 1,000. 



2487 



-102- 



In other areas, the method is extremely complicated. In Osaka, for ex- 
ample, the method of calculating the various taxes, which in the aggregate 
are moderate, calls for advanced calculus and all the ingenuity of the Japanese 
abacus (calculating machine) for its solution. Herewith is a rough transla- 
tion of the Osaka method: 

When the motion-picture theater has a seating capacity for 1,000 people, 
admission fees being Yen 0.50 as the lowest, Yen 1.00 as the medium rate and 
Yen 1.50 as the highest, tax is payable as follows: 

(a) National tax is 20 times the figure calculated by adding the 
lowest admission fee to the highest admission fee and dividing 
by two. 

(b) City tax is about the same. 

(c) In case seating capacity exceeds 1,000 the tax is increased at 
the following ratio: 

(1) Capacity being 1,100: 22 times the figure mentioned 
in (a). 

(2) Capacity being 1,500: 30 times the figure mentioned 
in (a). 

(d) The above tax is payable in case the performance is played only 
once a day. If the performance is repeated more than twice a 
day, half of the above figure is taxed upon each of the second 
and following performances. 



According to the Department of Home Affairs, there were 1,767 theaters 
operating in Japan at the beginning of 1936. Approximately 30 new theaters 
were opened during 1£36. 



There are 1,469 theaters in Japan equipped for sound motion pictures. 
This is 83 percent of the total number of theaters in the country. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



1935 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



4,938,343 
108,834 



ft. 



ft. 



$98,075 
$ 2,720 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



4,165,267 
35,192 



ft. 



ft. 



$78,496 
$661 



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-103- 



LATVIA 



LEGISLATION- 

The Latvian Government's project to establish a film import monopoly 
has not been abandoned, but no concrete plans have appeared as yet. The pro- 
duction of sound films in the Lettish language has been increasing, and the 
complete product is now made in Latvia. The Latvian authorities appear deter- 
mined to develop such production. 

CENSORSHIP- 

By special instructions issued by the Latvian Film Censoring Board, all 
texts, advertisements, and other printed" matter must be in the Lettish language 
only instead of Lettish, German, and Russian, as formerly. No foreign language 
except in the form of sound is permitted. This places American films at a dis- 
advantage, since the local population does not generally understand English, 
and certain sections of the population do not understand Lettish and are used 
to depending on the printed accompanying text, each racial subdivision of the 
population reading its own language. 

COMPETITION- 

The percentage of American films imported into Latvia in 1935 amounted 
to 43.3 percent of total imports of films. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The Baltic States still use the former Russian copyright law, '.vhich has 
never been revised and has therefore become obsolete. This does not offer 
proper protection to producers. The Latvian Government has decided to adhere 
to the Berne Convention of 1886, revised in Rome in 1S23. This will not become 
effective in Latvia until May 15, 1937. 

PRODUCTION- 1935 



Numbe r of films 



Length in meters 



Dramas 



Comedies 



1 



1 



2,150 
159 



News reels) 

Landscapes) 

Scientific 

Educational 

Advertising 



77 



21 



11 



1 



14,681 
1,530 
7,638 

-1-092 



Total 



112 



27,250 



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-104- 



TAXES- 

Turn-over tax payable, for tickets up to lats 1.20, 25 percent; tickets 
sold for 1.21 to 2.00 lats, 30 percent. When programs consist exclusively 
of educational films, the tax levied is 15 percent of the admission price. 
The tax levied on tickets in provincial theaters averages 20 percent of the 
cost of tickets, which for educational films, is reduced to 15 percent. Im- 
porters of films pay a special tax of 0.15 lats per meter for the benefit of 
the Culture Fund. 

THEATERS- 

There are 98 theaters in Latvia, of which 37 are in Riga. 
SOUND- 

There are no moving picture houses showing exclusively silent films. 
All moving picture theaters in Latvia are equipped for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 301,884 ft. $4,633 

Negative sound 

1936 -'(First 10 months) 

Positive sound 361,034 ft. $5,593 
Negative sound 



LITHUANIA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no quota or contingent laws on motion picture films in Lith- 
uania. 

Regulations governing the importation of cinema films into Lithuania 
were promulgated on November 19, 1932, retroactive to September 1, 1932, by 
the Minister of Finance, in agreement with the Minister of the Interior, on the 
basis of paragraph 103 (I) of the Customs Statutes, as amended on September 1, 
1932, and contain the following important provisions: 

1. Cinema films may be imported into Lithuania only through the Kaunas 
customhouse. 

2. Cinema films being imported through other customhouses shall be 
forwarded to the Kaunas customhouse for inspection. 



2487 



-1C5- 



3. After the Kaunas customhouse has inspected the film and received the 
assessed custcns duty as a deposit from the owner, or the forwarding; agent, 
it shall sutmit it to the film censor for inspection. Cinema films shall be 
submitted to the censor sealed. 

4. Films passed by the cencor shall be returned to the ovmer or to his 
authorized representative together with a permit from the censor, who shall 
so inform the Kaunas custcmhouse. 

5. Cinema films prohibited demonstration by the censor shall be re- 
turned to the Kaunas customhouse sealed; shall be reexported and the deposit 
made by the film owner shall be returned to him. 

6. Cinema films received from abroad by parcel post shall be forwarded 
to the Kaunas customhouse for inspection. The expense of sending cinema 
films to the film censor shall be covered by the owner or his authorized 
representative . 

Impo rt Licenses - 

By an extension of the Lithuanian import license system, effective 
February 15, 1C36, cinema films were included in the list of products for the 
import which a license is required. 

Regulation of Domestic News Reels- 
According to an amendment of the censorship law, effective April 15, 

1S35, permits must be procured for the exportation of films produced in 

Lithuania. 

The same amendment also provides that for the production of news reels in 
Lithuania a permit must be obtained from the Ministry of Interior. 

According to a decree of the Minister of Interior, promulgated on October 
1, 1935, domestic news reels may be demonstrated in cinema theaters in Kaunas 
and its suburbs, not longer than 9 weeks from date of the license by the cen- 
sor's office. In the towns of Siauliai, Panevezys, Mariampole, and Ukmerge the 
demonstration may last 14 weeks, in other district towns not longer than 24 
weeks, and in other places not longer than 8 months. 

CEKSCRSHIP- 

The Lithuanian Cinema Censorship Law also became effective on September 1, 
1S32, the most important provisions of v;hich are as follows: 

1. All films imported into Lithuania must be censored by the film censor 
of the Lithuanian Ministry of the Interior. 



2487 



-106- 



2. No films will be permitted to be demonstrated which endanger the 
safety of tne State or public safety, public order, morality or health. 

3. A nominal fee shall te charged for censoring films. 

For infraction cf the above laws offenders may be sentenced to imprison- 
ment or fined up to 5,000 lits with confiscation of the film, in accordance 
with an amendment of the Penal Code, effective September 1, 1932. 

On December 22, 1934, the Minister of the Interior issued instructions 
for the censorship of films on the basis of article 10 of the Censorship Law of 
September 1, 1932, the most important provisions of which are given below: 

1. The importation and demonstration of every film in Lithuania must 
be licensed by the film censor. 

2. In order to obtain a license, a petition must be submitted to the 
film censor. 

3. All subtitles ard texts written in a foreign language must be re- 
moved from the film before it is censored, and, where necessary, replaced 
by Lithuanian subtitles and texts. 

4. Subtitles on films or slides must correspond with the context. 

5. Films imported from abroad must be censored not later than 15 days 
after they are released by the customs authorities, or be liable to confis- 
cation by the censor, and to re-exportation at the owner's expense. 

6. Films, or parts of films, prohibited demonstration by the censor 
are to be surrendered by the owner for reshipment abroad, not later than two 
days after censoring. 

The noncompliance with this provision may result in the destruction of 
the^film. 

7. For the re-importation of films already demonstrated in Lithuania, a 
petition shall be filed in the usual manner and shall contain the date and 
number of the former license. 

No new laws or regulations regarding the censoring of films were pro- 
mulgated during the first 7 months of 1936. 

No statistics as to the number of films censored and demonstrated during 
the years 1934 and 1935 have been compiled by the censor. The number of 
films prohibited demonstration during 1935 was 12, of which 4 films were of 
American production, 3 of Soviet production, 3 of German origin, and 2 of 



C437 



-:C7- 



French origin. More detailed statistics -Aere not compiled during this year. 

The compilation cf detailed statistics was commenced on January 1S36. 
During the first 7 months of 1£36, a total of 434 films, having a length 
of 5C4,6S3 meters, were censored. Cf this number 204 films, having a length 
of 237, 3S3 iteters, were of American production; 117 films, 170,443 meters, 
German production; 31 films, S5,191 meters, Austrian production; 25 films, 
4,364 meters, Lithuanian production; 19 films, 29,132 meters, Soviet produc- 
tion; 19 films, 28,048 meters, British production; and 12 films, 23,585 meters, 
of French production. The rest were of Latvian, Polish, Palestine, and Swedish 
production. Of the total number of films censored, 174 films were in the Eng- 
lish language, 148 in German, 17 in Russian, and 12 in French. The language 
of the remainder of the films is unknown. In all, 14 films were prohibited 
dcmcnstraticn during the first 7 months of this year, of which 7 were of German 
production, 4 American, 2 Soviet, and 1 British. Statistics for later months 
are not yet available. 

CCMPETITICN- 

Accrrcing to a reliable individual in Lithuania, as well as officials 
of the Fils Censoring Section of the Ministry of Interior, approximately 50 
percent of films exhibited in Lithuania in 1933 were of American origin, fol- 
lowed by Gerxan (about 35 percent), French, Soviet Russian, Czechoslovak, and 
Polish films. About 50 percent of American films were dubbed in the German 
language. The percentage of films deEonstraled in Lithuania in 3934 is as 
follows: German and Austrian films 50 percent, American films 40 percent, 
one-half of which were dubbed in the German language, and the rest Soviet 
Russian and French films. 

According to the film censor of the ^'.inistry of the Interior, approxi- 
mately 60 percent of films exhibited in Lithuania during the year 1935 were of 
American origin, follovred by German (about 30 percent), Soviet, French, and 
others. During the first 8 months of 1135, approximately 60 percent of films 
prohibited were of American origin, 30 percent of German origin, and the 
rest of Soviet, Austrian, and French origin. 

COPYRIGHT REGULATIONS- 

There are no copyright relations with Lihuania. 
PRODUCTION- 

A monopoly for the production of news reels in Lithuania for a period of 
5 years was granted in April 1935, to Mr. Jurgis Lanartas, who later estab- 
lished the firm "Musu Lietuva" ("Our Lithuania"). This firm is producing 
principally news reels depicting Lithuanian life, but of a very poor quality. 



24S7 



-108- 



During the first 10 months of 1936 the firm "Musa Lietuva" produced 78 
news reels. The average length of a news reel is 120 meters. "Musu Lietuva" 
has purchased the necessary equipment for the taking of sound-on-f ilm news 
reels. It is believed that the demonstration of sound-on-f ilm news reels of 
local production will begin in the near future. 



The current Amusement Tax Law became effective August 1, 1932, and taxes 
admission to motion picture houses as follows: Tickets up to lit 1.00, 20 
percent; from lits 1.00 to lits 2.00, 30 percent; over lits 2.00, 40 percent. 

THEATERS - 64. 

The yearly box-office receipts of cinema theaters are considered as 
strictly confidential by the owners of the theaters, as well as by the tax 
authorities . 

According to unofficial information, the average gross receipts of the 
four principal theaters in Kaunas, the capital of Lithuania, during 1935, 
amounted to approximately 500,000 lits, compared to 400,000 lits in 1934. Net 
receipts average about 25 percent less than gross receipts. 

Owners of the larger theaters in Kaunas receive films either on a rental 
or perceni,age basis or both. They guarantee a certain rent for the film or a 
certain percent from the net profit, in cases involving a high class film, 
which they may derive from its demonstration. The net profit usually varies 
between 30 and 50 percent of the net receipts. 

In conformity with the Cinema Law, effective September 1, 1932, films of 
Lithuanian life are required to be shown daily. The usual demonstration order 
in local cinema theaters is as follows: Advertising of local commercial and 
industrial institutions, local news reels of a length of from 120 to 150 meters 
foreign (usually American) weekly news reels of from 300 to 350 meters, a 
grotesque comedy or scenic film of 150 to 300 meters, and then the feature. 

SOUND- 

There are 44 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



1935 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



36,793 ft. 



$504 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



111,991 ft. 



$2,812 



2487 



-103- 



MEXICO 

LEGISLATION- 

Preferential taxes accorded Spanish dialog films were reduced on foreign 
films not falling in this category through compromise in February 1936, and 
their influence on American competition is now described as negligible. Also, 
imports of Spanish dialog films during 1936 were of little importance, and 
are expected to continue so during 1337, with a fairly open field, therefore, 
being left for American enterprise. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Foreign pictures are cleared through the Customs at the border a.-id duties 
are paid. Immedir.tely upon their arrival in Mexico City, an application for 
their exhibition is placed with the Central Department. Arrangements are made 
by the Ce.-tral Department for the trial exhibition of the picture either in 
its own studio or in the projection room of the exhibitor. Censors are ap- 
pointed by the Central Department in accordar-ce with the demand, and the censor 
is usually a woman. The censors are particularly interested in securing the 
use of correct Spanish and eliminating any scenes which may be derogatory to 
Mexico. The censors are very reasonable, and the motion-picture producers are 
not experiencing any difficulty from that source. A fee of 5.75 pesos per reel 
is charged, and if the reel is over 300 meters, the censorship fee is 10 pesos. 

Censorship in Mexico is not considered burdensome. An additional censor- 
ship has been added and is now being effected in the Interior Department of 
the Goverr..nent . The object of this is to obtain assurance that films shov/n 
in Mexico are not inimical to national pride, culture, institutions, customs, 
history. Government policy, etc. No fee for this additional censorship is 
charged. 

Organized labor is reported interested in preventing the exhibition of 
Nazi or Fascist films in Mexico. Such films containing propaganda may be ex- 
pected to be blocked by the additional censorship in the Department of the 
Interior as opposed to national policy. Imports of films from Germany and 
Italy, therefore, may be adversely affected by the additional censorship and 
the policy of organized labor. 

COMFETITION- 

Froa 85 to 50 percent of films exhibited in Mexico are of American manu- 
facture. Imports during 1936 of films by countries are estimated in the trade 
as follows: 



2487 



-110- 



Country 



Number of films 



United States 



420 



England 

Germany 

Spain 

France 

Others 



20 



25 (♦) 
20 



15 



6 



Total 



506 



(*) Of these, about 12 are credited to an American company. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

By Presidential Proclamation of February 27, 1886, and April 9, 1910. 
An additional copyright regulation was published in the Diario Oficial of 
April 16, 1924, and is also recorded on page 330, chapter VII, of the Reformed 
Civil Code of the Federal District. 

PRODUCTION- 

Although about 50 national films were produced in 1935, many of them were 
by no means box office, with the result that 1936 production has been reduced 
and the total for the latter year is placed at about 28 films. Of these, eight 
were reported to have been "flops". Studios of Cinematografica Latino Ameri- 
cana were completed in 1936, but only one film has been produced, according 
to report. It is not considered that this company will offer much competition 
for some time. Cia. Nacional Productora de Peliculas is stated not to have 
been able to compete any films during 1936 because of a prolonged strike. 
The studio "Mexico Films" has three sound stages and is reputed to be the 
second best equipped in Mexico. Industria Cinematografica continues to oper- 
ate a sound stage. Total investment in these aforementioned studios is said 
to not exceed 900,000 pesos. Sound-film apparatus used in Mexican productions 
is owned and operated by other entities with the exception of Cinematografica 
Latino Americana which is reported to have its own sound recording equipment. 
The greater part of national films is produced by companies which rent a studio 
and sound recording apparatus only for the duration of production on a film. 
Although only seven companies regularly produce films, there are many more 
which are organized for only one film. 



Taxes are not considered high in the majority opinion of the industry. 
Generally, it is considered that taxes are fair and not disproportionate to 
those charged in other countries. Protests have been made by some national 
producers, but these are laid to production failures v/hich leave producers at 
times unable to meet taxes. 



TAXES- 



2487 



-Ill' 



Sr. Don Cosme Hinojosa, Chief of the Central Department (Federal Dis- 
trict), on January 12 last, was reported by the press to have denied petitions 
made by national producers in the Federal District that certain taxation ex- 
emptions be accorded them. The reply directed to the Union of Mexican Film 
Producers (Union de Productores de Peliculas Mexicanas) stated that if national 
producers were unable to meet taxes it was because of "incipiency" of the in- 
dustry and lack of sufficient capital and proper organization. Technical 
equipment was considered not enough, and the prime need of adequate talent and 
story material and artistic direction was pointed out. "Practical and positive 
protection" of national industry was seen as a problem belonging to the in- 
dustry and not one of the Government. Therefore, no immediate further pro- 
tection or additional preferential tax treatment is expected to be accorded 
national industry. 



THEATERS- 



A total of £35 houses are reported to be functioning in Mexico. A con- 
siderable part of the remainder are said not to be operated consecutively. 
Seating capacity of those regularly operating is placed at 700,000. 

In Mexico City about five new houses v/ere opened during 1936 and are oper- 
ating. Aaong these is the "Alameda", a very large and modern house. 

SOUND- 



There are 402 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 4,991,745 ft. $233,359 

Negative sound 19,020 ft. $822 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 7,093,139 ft. $225,419 

Negative sound 33,314 ft. $935 



NETHERLANDS 

LEGISLATION- 

Agitation against motion . picture film exhibition, distinguished from 
censorship, is practically nonexistent in the Netherlands. 

The most important development, in September 1936, affecting the motion- 
picture trade was the action taken by the Netherland Government to depreciate 
(in terms of dollars) the value of the guilder. Prior to September 26, 1936, 



2487 



■ 



-112- 



the exchange value of the dollar in the Netherlands had been stable for some 
time at about Fl . 1.48. Following the change in the financial policy of the 
Netherland Government on that date, exchange rates have fluctuated consider- 
ably and there is no assurance that the current rate will be maintained. In 
October 1936, the local exchange dollar is slightly above Fl . 1.85. The ex- 
change value of the dollar has appreciated approximately 37 guilder cents or 
about 25 percent during the month of October. 

There can be no immediate increase in the guilder rentals or royalties on 
American films exhibited in the Netherlands, so American producers must accept 
a loss in dollar returns from the local exhibitions of their films; they ac- 
cepted an increase in dollar returns when the depreciation of the dollar in 
1933 was not accompanied by any decrease in guilder charges locally. The 
dollar value of some of the fixed charges of distribution in the Netherlands, 
such as import duties and censorship fees, which are at specific footage rates, 
will be reduced. 

CENSORSHIP- , - • 

Censorship is rather strict. Under the present law of May 14, 1926, (S. 
118), power is vested in a Central Commission of 60 members, at the Hague, 
from which reviewing boards are appointed. Films are placed in one of three 
classes; (1) "long" (feature) films, (2) "cultural" and "scientific" films, 
usually short, but feature films are occasionally so classified, (3) "short" 
films, including news reels. Each film is given one of four ratings: (a) 
suitable for all ages, (b) not to be shown to children under 14 years of age, 
(c) not to be shown to persons under 18 years of age, (d) not to be exhibited. 
Films prescribed may be passed upon subsequent review, usually after altera- 
tions, and occasionally a higher rating is obtained by alterations and subse- 
quent review. The censorship fees are Fl . 0.035 per meter for feature films, 
and Fl . 0.001 per meter for cultural and scientific films. 

A Catholic censorship must review and pass all films rated "C" by the 
National Board before they may be exhibited in 28 municipalities of the Pro- 
vinces Limburg and North Brabant. There is no fee for this censorship. 

Any mayor may forbid the showirg of any film in his community however, 
that action is rare. The City of Nijmegen "requires approval by a local cen- 
sorship boa'^d; no censorship fee is charged. 

During the first 10 months of 1936 the National Board passed, "A", "B". 
or "C", 389 long feature films compared with 344 similar films passed in the 
corresponding period of the previous year. During the 1936 period 27 feature 
films were proscribed, 10 of that number passed subsequent reviews. In the 
1935 period 16 feature films had been proscribed without passing subsequent 
reviews . 



2487 

ft 



-11-3- 



Filcs are barred which are believed likely to incite disorder or immoral- 
ity or which have objectionable political tendencies. American gangster pic- 
tures are most often rejected by the censors; immorality (nudity in the "Catho- 
lic Provinces"), unacceptable treatment of religious subjects, and certain 
political propaganda are other usual causes for rejection. 

COMPETITICN- 

In recent years the dominant position of American feature films has 
improved, while German films have declined in popularity; there is no serious 
competition from Ketherland producers. The following table gives the national- 
ity of the long feature, or cultural, films passed by the National Board of 
Censors in the Netherlands. 





January 


1 to October 


31 








1935 


1956 


Nationality 


Number Percent 


Number 


Percen 


American 


1S6 


54.8 


212 


54.9 


German 


62 


18.0 


67 


17.2 


French 


30 


8.7 


35 


9.0 


Czechoslovak 


16 


4.6 


5 


1.3 


Austrian 


17 


4.9 


16 


4. 1 


English 


18 


5.2 


26 


6.7 


Netherland 


6 


1.7 


13 


3.3 


Hungarian 


2 


0.6 


4 


1.0 


Italian 


included 


3 


0.8 


Russian 




in 


6 


1.5 


Spanish 




others 


1 


0.3 


Belgian 






1 


0.3 


Others 


6 


1.9 








344 


100.0 


389 


100.0 



CCPYRIGKT RELATICNS- 

Netherlands is a member of the "Berne Convention". Present copyright 
laws are dated September 23, 1912. Copyright continues, with some exceptions, 
50 years after author's death. 

PRCDUCTION- 

Cnly two studios, Barnstijn at Wassenaar and Cinetone at Amsterdam, are 
used for regular production. Studio facilities elsewhere are used occasionally 
for special work. There are no producers working on regular production 
schedules; nine producing companies are listed but some of them have not 



2487 



-114- 



produced a picture during the current year. Nine Netherland long-feature 
films were released during the first 10 months of 1936. 



Import duties are fixed at Fl. 0.04 per meter to which must be added a 
compensatory duty of 1 percent and a sales tax of 4 percent. 

Amusement taxes vary with municipalities but are generally reasonable. 



About 305 theaters are listed; a few are not operated regularly. 

It is customary for American films to be released in the Netherlands 
for "first runs" on a percentage basis. The exhibitors guarantee a fixed min- 
imum and pay the distributors a percentage, usually 25 percent, of the net 
profit. American films are usually released for "second runs" on a straight 
guilder rental. Eventual improvement in business, which is expected to follow 
the new financial policy of the government, may increase percentage returns 
from "first runs" more than enough to compensate the American producers for 
the guilder depreciation. The exhibitors are confident that they will be 
able, although not immediately, to increase the fairly standard rental charges 
for second-run showings. 

For the past several years exhibitors have been able to maintain satis- 
factory attendance figures only by reducing entrance prices. The reductions 
have been fairly orderly but have not been governed by any definite agreement 
among the exhibitors, so it has been apparent for some time that regulation 
was necessary. The recent depreciation of the guilder will facilitate the 
efforts of those exhibitors who have been working to arrange such regulation. 
It is expected that the exhibitors will shortly agree on fixed minimum prices. 
The trade hopes that business developments will, somewhat later, justify in- 
creases graduated from those increased minimums. 



On October 31, 1936, there were 297 theaters wired for sound in the 
Netherlands; 90 installations for sound on film and 207 installations for 
film and disk. There are no regular showings of silent pictures. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



1935 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3,802,697 ft. 
6,413 ft. 



$70,149 
$641 



2487 



-115- 



1936 (First 10 months) 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3,436,539 ft. 
41,050 ft. 



$60,011 
$1,873 



NETHERLANDS INDIES 



LEGISLATION- 

None. American pictures are popular with the public and the official 
attitude towards them is favorable. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Remains strict as to all subjects involving racial or religious differ- 
ences, strikes or labor unrest, mob disorders, violence, and cruelty. While 
murder in itself as a necessary part of the plot is not objected to, "undue" 
violence even in a detective mystery story is frov/ned on. Censorship from the 
point of view of sex is as strict as ever, but American films are now en- 
countering little difficulty on that score. The number of American films 
banned is steadily decreasing, the percentage of American films rejected for 
showing having been 12 percent in 1933, 10 percent in 1934, 5 percent in 1935, 
and 4.8 percent in the first half of 1936. In 1936, 13 American feature 
pictures were banned up to October 31, chiefly because of alleged excessive 
violence or cruelty. 

COMPETITION- 

Aaerican films made up 68 percent of all films reviewed by the Censorship 
Commission in the first half of 1936, as against 64 percent of those reviewed 
during 1935, indicating the increasingly dominant position of the American 
product. German and Dutch films lost ground as against previous years, making 
up respectively 8.4 percent and 4 percent of the total during the first half 
of 1S36. British films showed a slight gain, accounting for 4.8 percent, while 
the remaining 15 percent of the total was divided among the products of 10 
different countries, none of which obtained more than 2 or 3 percent cf the 
market. These Censorship Commission figures will not necessarily agree with 
import figures during the same period. 

The outlook for American films appears to be good, and the decreasing 
popularity of German films is diminishing their local importance as the chief 
competitors of the American product. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Laws of the Netherlands apply. 



2487 



-116- 



PRODUCTION- 

Despite the formation during 1936 of a new company to produce films, 
chiefly travelogs and short subjects, local production remains negligible and 
v/hile it may increase slightly, it is highly unlikely that locally produced 
pictures will obtain more than 5 percent of the local market during 1937. 

During the first half of 1936, 16,170 meters of locally produced film 
were reported as having been reviewed by the Censorship Commission, of which 
7,112 meters were silent film. This local film made up about 2 percent of the 
total amount reviewed during the period. 



Taxes remain high and include an import duty of 15 guilder cents per 
meter of film. An amusement tax on admissions is levied by cities and towns 
and varies, but averages about 22? percent of the admission price. 



There were 143 theaters estimated to be regularly open for daily per- 
formances during 1936. The estimated total of 198 includes about 55 opened 
only for occasional shows. 

An accurate estimate of the total number of theaters in the country is 
difficult to obtain, as many theaters in the rural districts are little more 
than barns, in which shows are occasionally given, sound equipment being some- 
times moved from one building to another. Some estimates place the number of 
buildings available and suitable for motion picture exhibition as high as 250. 



There are 172 theaters wired for sound. At least 10 percent of these 
have been closed for several years and their sound equipment is probably in 
poor condition at present. 



TAXES- 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



1,883,440 ft. 
1,600 ft. 



$36,103 
$53 



1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,085,152 ft. 
4.126 ft. 



$35,456 
$123 



2487 



-117- 



NETHERLAND WEST INDIES 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no agitation against American pictures in the Netherland West 
Indies. It is unfortunate, however, that under the so-called "block" booking 
system employed by American distributors, many wholly unsuitable films must be 

exhibited. These either depict unsavory phases of American life, because of 
subjects which deal with negro life to the disparagement of the white race, 
or vice versa, or they deal with a subject which is of no possible interest to 
local people. It is realized that the small size of the market of the Nether- 
land West Indies renders difficult any attempt to permit advance showing of 
films, but for that very reason it would seem possible for distributors to 
choose with more care the kind of films they send to local moving-picture 

houses . 

CENSORSHIP- 

It is now possible for the board of censors to require the "cutting out" 
of any part or parts of a film, or to refuse permission for the film to be 
shown, if objectionable, with special attention being paid to pictures depict- 
ing class strife, political activities, and immorality. Whether a picture is 
suitable for both minors and adults or only for the latter, continues to be of 
special interest to the censors. 

COMPETITION- 

American films accounted for fully 95 percent of all films shown in the 
Netherland West Indies during the current year. Ne'.vs reels from the Nether- 
lands and British films offer the principal competition. 

COPYRIGHT LAWS- 

Copyright laws of the Netherlands apply to the Netherland Vv'est Indies. 
If a film is copyrighted in the Netherlands, it is protected in the Netherland 
West Indies by virtue of such copyright. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is no production of films in the Netherland West Indies. 
TAXES- 

No taxes are imposed upon theaters or theater admissions. 



2487 



-118- 



THEATERS- 

There are six theaters showing moving pictures in the Netherland West 
Indies, an increase of one from the last report. This theater (Theater Brion) 
located in Curacao is not, however, employed continuously as a moving-picture 
house, although it is wired for sound machines. Prices of admission are 
(current rate of exchange - 1.85 florins to the dollar) fO.13 to 50.65. 

SOUND- 

There are six theaters wired for sound in the Netherland West Indies, 
four in Curacao and two in Aruba. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 
Negative sound 



892,041 ft. 
10,535 ft, 



S?,723 
«267 



986,801 ft. 
2,119 ft, 



$14,767 
$63 



NEW ZEALAND 

LEGISLATION- 

No new film legislation was passed during 1S36. However, under the 
powers conferred by the Board of Trade Act, the New Zealand Film Licensing 
Board has decreed that all future applications for exhibitors' licenses will 
be carefully considered and that no license will be renewed if it is decided 
that either (a) undue hardship would result to the community, or (b) if un- 
reasonable economic waste would result. It is likely that this will prevent a 
rise in the present total of motion-picture theaters operating in the Dominion, 
inasmuch as a feeling persists among motion-picture distributors and in the 
community generally that New Zealand is, if anything, already over-supplied 
with theater facilities. 

CENSORSHIP- 

During the year ended March 31, 1936, a total of 2,060 films of all 
classes, of a total length of 5,142,240 feet were examined by the censors. 
Of this number 11 were rejected, 91 were passed after cutting, and the number 
of films recommended as more suitable for adult audiences than for children 
was 155. These figures compare with those of the year previous, which were 
as follows: 28 rejected; 140 cut, and 227 recommended for adults. Opinion 
among exhibitors is that the drop in censorship activities indicates a general 



2487 



-119- 



imprcvement in tbe type of film shovm over the previous year. Of the 11 films 
rejected, 8 were American. 

CGMPETITICN- 

During the year ended March 31, 1936, British quota films totaled 107, 
with a length of 767,620 feet, and nonquota films 374, of 384,520 feet. For- 
eign quota films totaled 376, with a length of 2,750,550 feet, and nonquota 
films 1,203, with a length of 1,239,550 feet. The grand total consisted of 
483 quota films with a length of 3,518,170 feet, and 1,577 nonquota films, 
of a total length of 1,624,070 feet. The total of nonquota films decreased 
by 113 from those exhibited in the previous year, while there were 2 less 
quota films shewn. The countries of origin of the quota films were as fol- 
lows: United States, 373 (an increase of 19 over the previous year). Great 
Britain 104 ( a decrease of 9 over the previous year), Australia 1, New Zea- 
land 2, Germany 1, Spain 1, and Italy 1. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright Act of 1S09, by proclamation February 9, 1917, extended May 25, 
1222. 

(A complete summary of the copyright laws of New Zealand is on file in the 
Commercial Laws Division, Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce, Washington, 
D. C. ) 

A fee of Id. per New Zealand £1 of theater box revenues is paid by Kew 
Zealand exhibitors to the local representatives of the Australian Authors' 
Rights Protective Association. Those exhibitors who are members of the New 
Zealand Motion Picture Exhibitors' Association are given a 20 percent rebate 
pn these fees. 

PRCDUCTICN- 

A total of £6,026 feet of film, valued at New Zealand £1,927, was pro- 
duced in New Zealand and exported therefrom in the calendar year 1935. Three 
films have been produced and exhibited in New Zealand during the past 12 
months. These were: "Phar Lap's Son", "The Friendly Road", and "Romantic 
New Zealand". The latter film was produced by the New Zealand Tourist and 
Publicity Department at a studio which the Government has recently taken over 
at Miramar, Wellington. The Government intends to film a series of educational 
and scenic films of New Zealand during the coming year. One object of this 
scheme is to export the film to foreign countries for the purpose of attracting 
tourists to the Dominion. 



24S7 



-120- 



TAXES- 

Under the Cinematograph Films Act, 1928, the taxable income derived by 
any person from the business of renting films shall be deemed to be 12-5- percent 
of the gross receipts derived from such business. This became operative as 
from April 1, 1928. The rate payable is on a sliding scale, the maximum now 
being 4s. 6d. in the £1 plus 30 percent. In September, 1930, the Film Hire 
Tax v/as passed, the gross receipts from the renting of foreign films after 
allowing a deduction of all expenses paid in New Zealand and an amount equal 
to 12^ percent of the gross receipts derived from the renting of sound films, 
being taxes 25 percent. The rate of British films is 10 percent. The duty of 
Id. per foot, payable on all foreign importations of films, was cancelled as 
from July 1, 1930. The advantages of this system of taxation were: 

(a) That it was directly in proportion to the net receipts from and 
therefore the value of film. 

(b) That it did not restrict the importation of film in any way. 

(c) That it was only payable after the monies were received by the 
renter, and thereby reduced the actual capital required for the 
operation of the business. 

(d) That it came into immediate operation and the Government derived 
revenue from the films already imported which would otherwise have 
escaped taxation. It is necessary to secure a renter's license to 
operate in New Zealand. 

The only change made by the recently enacted legislation in the method 
of taxation was the fixing of 12-|- percent to the gross receipts of renters as 
an income for taxation purposes. Heretofore, the taxable income was to be 
not less than 12^ percent of the gross receipts, and in some cases, renters 
were charged at a higher rate than this percentage. 

The total film hire tax for the year ended March 31, 1936, was New Zealand 
£60,657. Recent increases in film rentals indicate that the total collected 
for the next fiscal year may exceed New Zealand £70,000. 

THEATERS- 

A total of 410 exhibitors' licenses were issued during the license year 
ended September 30, 1934. In addition, licenses were issued to 35 circuit 
exhibitors, and to 14 film exchanges. 

A point of difference between the local distributing and exhibiting 
interests is the advisability of increasing the number of theaters licensed to 
exhibit film in New Zealand. Exhibitors argue that more theaters should be 



2487 



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licer.sed, that in the smaller towns the public is not able to witness a good 
many of even the higher quality films because of lack of exhibiting facilities. 
The distributors contend otherwise, and argue that even now some of the smaller 
theaters are unable to earn e.iough money owiag to meager attendance. 

The New Zealand Licensing Board is understood to have recently consented 
that two technical advisers, one from the distributors and one from the exhibi- 
tors, shall assist it in passing on future applications for theater licenses. 



SOUND- 



There are 410 theaters wired for sound. 
I.VPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1335 - Positive sound 3,646,539 ft. $70,374 

Negative so-nd 39,771 ft. $686 

1336 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sou-d 3.341,850 ft. 1^58,958 

Negative soa::d 50,083 ft. tQOl 



NICARAGUA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no quota or contingent laws, inimical to the interests of 
American films. 

CEi;SORCKIP- 

Not strict. Few films are cut and then principally for moral reasons. 
COyPETITION- 

The films are 95 percent American, remainder from Mexico, Germany, and 
Great Britain. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Inter-American Copyright Convention, Mexico City and Buenos Aires, 
January 27, 1902 and August 11, 1910, as modified by the Havana agreement of 
February 18, 1S28. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is no film production in Nicaragua. 

2487 



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TAXES- 

High. Theaters pay local taxes and import duty. 
THEATERS- 

There are 25 theaters in Nicaragua. Seating capacity is approximately 
20.000. 

The average range of admission prices is from 10 to 50 centavos, while 
the average program consists of one feature, one comedy, and one news reel. 
Programs are changed daily. In the smaller theaters which do not open daily, 
the program is changed for each showing. The lower classes appear to like 
"Wild West" pictures while the better educated classes prefer drama. 

American stars are decidedly preferred. There is a very pronounced ob- 
jection to American stars with native language "dubbed in". The performance 
does not appear real; it is too evident that the person acting and the person 
talking are not the same; and the spoken words are frequently either too slow 
or too fast, and consequently do not synchronize with the action. Spanish- 
speaking films are preferred. 

SOUND- 

All of the 25 theaters are wired for sound. 

NORWAY 

LEGISLATION- 

The government renders no aid to Norwegian film producers. It has now 
become the policy to organize a new company when a film is to be made, thus ob- 
taining the necessary capital. Because of the difficulty in raising the funds 
needed, and because of the small amount allowed for each picture (approximately 
Kr. 100,000 in comparison with Swedish films costing from Kr. 150.000 to Kr. 
200,000). a Norwegian picture has little, if any, chance of becoming wholly 
satisfactory. The studio built at Jar, outside of Oslo, has not furnished the 
desired incentive, and although there is still a certain amount of agitation 
for governmental assistance among those interested in the film industry, the 
Norwegian public itself seems to have lost interest in the matter. This is 
evidently because of lack of enthusiasm over new Norwegian releases, no doubt 
caused by the low standard of films produced in this country. 



2487 



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CENSORSHIP- 

The censorship plan has remained unchanged, and, except for increased 
efforts to restrict the showing of gunplay and gangster films, the same 
methods are followed as heretofore. 

COMPETITION- 

American films are very popular in Norway, fhere is, and always will be, 
a certain amount of criticism with regard to American pictures, many of them 
being so entirely foreign to the Norv/egian trend of thought. However, there is 
no doubt that American films are preferred, even though European pictures are 
perhaps core readily understood. During 1S35 there were released in Oslo 
269 films, of which 169 were American, 41 German, 18 Swedish, and 16 British. 
As will be noted, German pictures again ranked second in number and are the" 
closest competitors, but the figures for American films and German pictures 
are so widely separated that the competition seems to be small indeed. That 
Swedish films have third place is naturally due to the similarity in the 
Swedish and Norwegian languages. 

During the first half of 1936 there were released in Oslo 131 films, an 
increase of 17 as compared with the last half of 1935. American films numbered 
85, or 65 percent of the total, and German 13, or 10 percent. As compared 
with the first half of 1935, there was an increase of 4 percent in the number 
of American films shown, and a decrease of 7 percerjt in German pictures. 

The improved economic condition of Norway nas been reflected in the at- 
tendance and box-offics receipts of Oslo, the capital. There has been a 
steady increase in both for each 6-month period during 1935 and the first half 
of 1935. Inasmuch as all releases are as a rule made through this city, 
figures for Oslo are believed to shew the trend for the entire country. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright relations, with legal rights and restrictions, are specified in 
the royal decree of July 1, 1905, as amended by the decrees of April 9, 1910, 
and June 14, 1911. 

PRODUCTICN- 

So far, in 1936, no Norwegian pictures have been produced, but there is a 
possibility that the only picture now being made, Morderen Uten Ansikt (The 
Murderer Without a Face) will be finished and released during 1936. The A/S 
Merkur Film has been organized for the purpose of producing this film, and it 
is the intention of the company to produce another picture if that mentioned 
above proves to be a success. 



2487 



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TAXES- 

There has been no change in the taxes levied on foreign films, 10 percent 
of the gross receipts being collected as in the past. Films of Norwegian pro- 
duction are taxed 5 percent. 

THEATERS- 

There are at the present time 240 motion picture theaters in Norway. It 
is expected, however, that this number will gradually increase as the popu- 
larity of "neighborhood" theaters becomes more apparent. This is, of course, 
particularly true in the suburbs of Oslo, most of which do not boast of their 
own movie. During 1936 a few districts near Oslo have built small motion- 
picture theaters which are of course most popular with the younger generation. 
As in the United States, these houses usually show second-run pictures. 

The rental of first-run foreign films remains at 30 percent of the gross 
receipts; and films produced in this country, at 40 percent. Second- run for- 
eign films are rented at 28 percent of the gross receipts and Norwegian at 33 
percent as heretofore. 

SOUND- 

All of the 240 theaters are wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 1,425,334 ft. $29,741 

Negative sound 1,893 ft. $19 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 1,198,036 ft. $23,104 
Negative sound 



PALESTINE 

LEGISLATION- 

None in Palestine. 
CENSORSHIP- 

Censorship is very strict. The Central Censorship Board, appointed by the 
High Commissioner, consists of nine members, including the District Commis- 
sioner, Jerusalem District, as chairman; representatives of the Inspector 
General of Police and Prisons, of the Director of Education and of the Chamber 
of Commerce; the Assistant District Commissioner, Jerusalem District; an assis- 



2487 



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tsnt secretary from the Chief Secretary's Office, and the Government Welfare 
Inspector. 

No film may be exhibited without first obtaining the required governmental 
authorization. The fees, prescribed by regulation, are: 

For news films or advertisements, LP. 0.100 each.* 
For other films, LP. 1.000 each. 

A fee is prescribed of LP. 0.250 payable to each member for each film 
reviewed. This fee, however, is paid by the Government itself. 

* Rate of exchange as of December 12, 1236, $4.90. Palestine pound is the 
same as the pound sterling cf Great Britain. 

COKPETITION- 

American, Austrian, English, Russian, Czechoslovak, French, Polish, Egyp- 
tian, and domestic. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Separate agreement between United States and Palestine dated September 29, 

1933. 

PRODUCTICN- 

There are three Jewish companies: one produces news reels with text in 
Hebrew and English, two produce sound pictures in Hebrew. 

TAXES- 

The Government fees for the issuance of a license to operate a theater 
or cinema are as follows: 

Annual license: 

Seating capacity 1 to 100, LP. 10; 101 to 200. LP. 20; over 200, LP. 30. 

Occasional License: 

All classes, LP. 0.500 per day. 

The Government imposes a revenue tax on all theater and cinema tickets 
varying according to the price of the ticket, as follows: 



2487 



-126. 



Revenue duty on tickets of 50 to 99 mils, 5 mils; 100 to 200, 10 mils; 
200 to 500, 20 mils; 500 to 1,000, 30 mils; 1,000 and up, 50 mils. 

The city of Tel Aviv is the only Municipality in Palestine imposing a 
municipal tax on theater or cinema tickets. This tax (which is, of course, in 
addition to the Government tax) also varies according to the price of the 
ticket, as follows: 

Municipal tax on tickets from 1 to 50 mils, 2 mils; 50 to 85, 4 mils; 
85 to 125, 8 mils; 125 to 150, 16 mils; 150 to 200, 24 mils; 200 to 250, 
34 mils; 250 to 450, 50 mils; 450 to 1,000 100 mils. 

THEATERS- 

Twenty-eight. (One in Trans-Jordan). 

SOUND- 

All of the 28 theaters are equipped for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 529,140 ft. $9,152 

Negative sound 245 ft. $25 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 241,976 ft. $3,981 
Negative sound 

PANAMA 

LEGISLATION- 

Panama has no contingent laws, decrees, etc., inimical to American 
films. If American films could be imported and exhibited in all other markets 
as easily as in Panama, film producers would have very little trouble. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Film producers and distributors have little to worry about regarding 
Panamanian censorship laws. In reality there is no federal censorship law. 
The Administrative Code, articles 1221 through 1237, regulates public per- 
formances, but no mention is made of censoring motion picture films nor is 
there any federal censorship committee in existence. In practice, the censor- 
ship committee for the City of Panama more or less acts for the entire Repub- 
lic. As a rule if the Panama City authorities pass a picture it is accepted 



2487 



-127- 



throughout the country. Municipal La-.v No. 38 of 1928 providos for the creation 
of a censorship committee. 

The Canal Zone does not have a censorship committee. Every picture per- 
mitted to be exhibited in the United States is shown in the Canal Zone. Both 
the Army and Canal Zone theaters have a clause in their contracts whereby 
they may eliminate certain parts of any film if deemed advisablt;. Pa.iama, 
like all other Latin American countries, is extremely sensitive about any 
picture or news reel that tends to discredit its national honor. 

COI^PETITION- 

American films are popular and are in the greatest demand. An occasional 
German, Mexican, and English film is exhibited, and those of the better typo 
are fairly well received. Spanish pictures made in Spain, and Argentine pic- 
tures have found favor with Panama audiences. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

All copyrights are paid for in the United States before entering Panama. 

PRODUCTION- 

There are no motion-picture producing companies in the Republic of 
Panama, and up to the present time no atter.pt has been made to organize a 
producing company. 

TAXSS- 

The only Federal Tax on motion pictures is assessed against tickets. 
Tickets that cost up to 20 cents pay a tax of ^ cent, tickets that cost up to 
40 cents pay a tax of 1 cent, and those that cost up to 60 cents pay a tax of 
2 cents. All in excess of 60 cents pay a tax of 5 cents each. 

n'otion pictures produced in a foreign language, and having titles not 
s-perimposed in Spanish, pay double the rate quoted above. 

Motion picture theaters pay a municipal license tav which varies according 
to the city, classification of theater, gross income, etc. For example, in 
Panama City the municipal tax is divided into five categories. First class 
houses pay a monthly license tax of $175; second class, $150; third class, 
$100; fourth class, $50; fifth class, fiO; and sixth class, $30. 

THEATERS- 

The Republic of Panama has 23 theaters. 



2487 



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Canal Zone (including Bureau of Playgrounds, Army, Navy, and Y.M.C.A.), 

24. 

(a) Operated by Bureau of Clubs and Playgrounds, 10. 

(b) Army, 10. 

(c) Navy, 2. 

(d) Y.M.C.A. , 2. 

The average program of theaters operating in the Canal Zone consists of 
one feature of seven to eight reels, one 1-reel news, one 2-reel or two 1-reel 
comedies or some substitute such as a travel or educational short. Programs 
for first-run houses in the Republic of Panama consist of approximately nine 
reels. There is usually one 7-reel feature and one 2-reel or two 1-reel 
shorts . 

In the Republic of Panama programs are changed four times each week. The 
Army theaters in the Canal Zone change seven times each week or once every 
day. The Bureau of Clubs and Playgrounds changes programs six times each week. 
Generally speaking, the drawing capacity is rather limited which explains why 
programs are changed so often, more in particularly in the Canal Zone. In the 
first-run houses in Colon and Panama City an exceptionally good picture will 
draw a full house for two and sometimes three days, but in the Canal Zone 
attendance is always less the second day regardless of the success of the 
picture. 

Admission prices vary considerably. Army theaters charge only 15 cents, 
except for civilian Government employees, who pay 25 cents. Theaters oper- 
ated by the Bureau of Clubs and Playgrounds charge 40 cents admission when 
featuring first-run pictures, on all other occasions the entrance fee is 50 
cents. First-run houses in Panama City and Colon, for week day matinees from 
1 to 3 p.m., charge 15 cents for children and 30 cents for adults; after 3 p.m. 
the price is 20 and 40 cents. On Sundays and holidays from 1 to 3 p.m., ad- 
mission is 20 and 30 cents, v/hereas third-class theaters charge from 10 to 15 
cents. 

The Panamanian market is decidedly in favor of American films made in the 
English language. The Canal Zone represents approximately 50 percent of the 
market for moion-picture films, and it is natural that American residents 
prefer American films. Motion picture distributors and theater operators in 
the Republic of Panama are unanimously of the opinion that the theater-going 
public objects to seeing American-made films with Spanish "dubbed in". When 
the sound films first made their appearance, Spanish dubbed in pictures were 
fairly popular for a short while, but the novelty soon wore off and almost 
everyone realizes that the majority of the popular American film stars do not 



2487 



-12?- 



speak Spanish and any atteii^t to dub Spanish in films is objectionable. Prac- 
tically every educated Panamanian reads and writes and understands the English 
language almost as well as an American or Englishman. They have become ac- 
customed to American films ' i)roduced in the English language and prefer them 
tc a mediocre film made in their own language. 

The theater-going public in the Republic of Panama is partial to musicales 
and social dramas and any type of picture that goes over well in the United 
States. The same situation is true in the Canal Zone. News reels are ex- 
ceptionally popular in the Canal Zone and it might be interesting to know that 
the Army and the Bureau of Clubs and Playgrounds theaters receive news reels 
about seven or eight days after they are released in New York. Americans 
residing in the Canal Zone like to keep up with conditions in the United 
States which explains why the news reels are so popular. 

In the Interior, films made in the Spanish language are fairly popular, 
principally on account of many of the laboring people being unable to read and 
write. They understand little or no English, and superimposed titles in Span- 
ish do not satisfy this class of patrons. The Interior represents such a 
small part of the market for motion-picture films that it is hardly worth 
while for American distributors to compete for it. 

SOUND- 

All of the 23 theaters in the Republic of Panama, and the 24 theaters in 
the Canal Zone are wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 
1335 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 8,494,873 ft. $105,647 

Negative sound 8,404 ft. $111 

PARAGUAY 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no adverse film agitation in Paraguay, and no quota or contingent 
laws inimical to the interest of American films are in effect. 

CENSORSHIP- 

It is understood that there are no censorship laws, but the munici- 
pality has the right of censorship if it so chooses. It is seldom that the 
municipality requests to see a picture. 
2487 



9,944,990 ft, $133,362 



-130- 



COMPETITION- 

Of the films shown, 95 percent are American. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There are no copyright relations in Paraguay, 
PRODUCTION- 

There is no production of films in Paraguay, and there are no studios or 
producers at present. 

TAXES- 

Moderate. There is a city tax of 1 peso on each admission; 1 peso is 
approximately five-twelfths of 1 United States cent. There is also a tax 
imposed on theaters to receive their licenses. 

THEATERS- 

There are six theaters in Paraguay. 

The average motion-picture program consists of one feature and one or 
two short subjects such as news reels or comedies. Musical comedies are the 
favorite type of picture. Almost any type of picture is accepted by the 
public, with one exception, i. e., drama. There is too much drama in real life 
in Paraguay, and for tnat reason dramas receive very little attendance. Amer- 
ican stars are preferred, without a doubt, and the language has very little 
importance. Very few Paraguayans speak any other language than Spanish, and as 
long as the subtitles are used there is no objection. There is no objection 
to American stars with native language "dubbed in". 

SOUND- 

There are six theaters wired for sound. 

PERU 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no legislation affecting the importation of motion-picture film 
excepting that pertaining to censorship. 



2487 



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CENSORSHIP- 

Ccmplaints by importers of films and cinema owners regarding unjust cen- 
sorship and other irregularities in film legisi-ation in Peru resulted in a 
decree dated Dececber 27, 1235, supplementing and modifying former ones on this 
subject. This decree, in turn, has been supplemented by decrees of January 9, 
ie36, and February 19, 1936. 

It is provided that all films (features, shorts and trailers) iray be 
introduced into Peru only through Callao Custom House, and films entering 
through other ports will be forwarded to the Callao Custom House for clearance. 
A refund of 50 percent of duties paid will be made on pictures rejected by the 
Board of Censors. (Decree February 19. 1936.) 

•According to the new regulations, the exhibition of films will not be 
allowed unless they have first been approved by an individual censor, a special 
censorship body called "Patronato Nacional de Censura" and by the Minister of 
Justice in cases where it may be so decided. This censorsip body will be 
cccposed of the youngest district attorney of the Lima Superior Court of Jus- 
tice, who will act as chairman, the Director of Education and three officials 
representing the Departments of Government and Police, Foreign Affairs, Labor 
and Social Prevision, a member of the Provincial Council of Lima to be appoint- 
ed by the Council, and the Municipal Inspector of Shows. All of these offi- 
cials will serve ad hcnorem. The treasurer of this body will also act as sec'^ 
retary and will submit his accounts monthly to the Department of Justice wh-io-h 
will in turn pass them on to the Government for approval. 

The Film Censorship Office will depend directly from the Director of 
the Department of Justice, and will have its own staff, according to provi- 
sions contained in the Budget. The Patronato will depend from the Knister. 

- ■• Censorship duties at the rate of 3 centavos per meter will be collected 
on sound films and 20 soles for films not exceeding 500 meters in length. 
These charges have been in effect since 1930. Silent films will pay 2 centavos 
per meter and 10 soles for films under 500 meters. 

Other articles of the decrees cited, regulating the censorship of films, 
provide that shows will be classified as follows: Proper for adults (adultos); 
young women (senoritas), and children (menores) . The term "menores" is used to 
designate children of both sexes under 18 years of age; "senoritas" for young 
wcmen of more than 18 years, and "adultos" for men above 18 years. 

Children under 18 years shal Inot be admitted to shows considered improper , 
One classification is "not recommendable for girls". This is given on pic- 
tures that, while considered appropriate, are not recommended for young 
ladies. Another classification is "appropriate for boys and girls over 15 
years". These last two classifications are contained in. Supreme Decree of 
February 19, 1936. 
2467 



-132- 



In shows approved for minors it is prohibited to show pictures or trailers 
•„hich have not previously been qualified as suitable for minors although these 
be shown merely for advertising purposes. 

Boys and girls under 18 years will not be admitted to any show approved 
only for adults, even though accompanied by their parents. 

Penalties for infringement of these articles range from 20 to 1,000 soles, 
according to the gravity of the offense and the recommendations of police en- 
trusted with enforcement. Outside of Lima censorship will be exercised by 
Municipal Councils. Members of censorship committees will have free entry to 
all cinematographic shows. 

A ministerial resolution, dated January 3, 1S36, stated that the special 
function of Peruvian censorship is to scrutinize the morality of cinemato- 
graphic shows throughout the Republic, prohibit exhibition of immoral, anti- 
nationalistic, and other pictures which may incite crime or delinquincy or 
which may injure the dignity of foreign countries. The resolution also pro- 
vides that the Censorship Board shall meet fortnightly, the attendance of 
one-half of its members being necessary fcr a quorum. Extraordinary sessions 
may be called by the President whenever deemed necessary or by two of the 
members if they request it. Decisions will be arrived at by the majority of 
attending members. In case of a tie the vote of the president will count as 
two votes. 

The Board will study all applications for reconsideration from film agents 
and exhibitors when these are not satisfied with the censors' decision; it will 
pass upon claims or appeals from fines imposed for infringements of present 
regulations. A committee composed of members of the Board will act upon appli- 
cations for reconsideration, review the film, and render a decision from which 
no further appeal can be made. The same applies to reconsiderations of fines 
exacted. The Board of Censors has the power to adopt measures for improving 
its operation providing such measures are not opposed to existing regulations. 
It may also submit recommendations to the Government respecting its functions 
as experience may dictate. 

Correspondence and applications requesting action of the Board shall be 
sent with the film to be reviewed one week in advance. The Peruvian Board of 
Censors has no projection facilities of its own. Pictures are screened at 
distributor's release house. The Board will review all films in chronological 
order of receipt, advising exhibitors the day and hour their film will be 
reviewed. News reel, animated cartoons, and instructive films will receive 
priority, that is, they will not have to be forwarded in advance or taken in 
turn. Other duties assigned to various members of the Board include the main- 
tenance of proper records, preparing weekly programs of films to be passed upon 
checking film footage, and regulation of inspectors. 



2487 



-133- 



COMPETITION- 

Mcticn-picture compstition which was SO percent American less than a year 
ago is now estimated at 70 percent American in playing time and 60 percent of 
pictures exhibited. Dominance of the Peruvian cineoa market by American pro- 
ductions is said to be threatened by Mexican, Argentine, and European files. 
"Kelp Me to Live" (Ayudame a Vivir) , an Argentine feature now being e>:hibited 
in second-t and third-run theaters of the capital district is said to have 
grossed over $4,000 in 3 days, which sum exceeds returns for the same period 
on several leading American features advertised and advanced in the best manner 
possible before and during showing. 

It is new clear that in Peru American pictures are losing ground daily^ 
Most Peruvians prefer pictures in their own tongue and the Mexican and Argen- 
tine pictures, as poorly executed as they are, "reach the soul", as the ex- 
pression goes, of the bulk of the population in both language- and plot, where- 
as, Spanish pictures featuring Mojica, produced in the United States are really 
American type dramas. 

Nevertheless, distributors of American films are confident of holding the 
lien's share of the trade with present stars and features. 

CCPYRIGKT RELATICNS- 

Inter-American. Copyright Convention at Buenos Aires, August 11, 1910. 
Ratified July 13, 1914. 

PRODUCTICN- 

Cne film was produced during 1S36. No studios exist in Peru^ 
TAXES- 

Municipal license tax; duty on film, 10 percent of admission tickets, 
and censorship tax of 3 centavos per meter on sound films, 20 soles for films 
not over 500 meters in length. 

THEATERS- 

There are 2C0 theaters in Peru, including 15 portable equipments. Total 
seating capacity, 100,000. There are now 65 theaters operating in the Lima- 
Callac district; there were 57 in 1S35. A few theaters are closed; estimated 
number, 10. Six new theaters are in construction. 

SCUND- 

There are ISO theaters wired for sound. 



24S7 



-134- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2.653.753 ft. 
910 ft. 



545.036 
$90 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,594,896 ft. 
2,530 ft. 



$43,212 
$31 



PHILIPPINE ISLANDS 



LEGISLATION- 

A municipal ordinance prohibiting first-run theaters from selling standing 
room was declared unconstitutional and is no longer effective. The city of 
Manila has passed an ordinance covering storage of films, with which most of 
the companies will have some difficulty in complying, if it is strictly en- 
forced. The only feature of this ordinance likely to cause trouble is a re- 
quirement that vaults containing motion pictures must be supported by masonry 
or steel of sufficient strength to carry the load safely, and that beams shall 
rest at both ends on steel girders, iron or steel columns, or walls or piers 
of masonry. The supports shall not be used for foundation walls, nor for 
walls of other than the top vault where vaults are superimposed. 

Film companies maintain that this is not necessary and that it would 
require putting up new buildings to contain their vaults. So far, it has not 
been strictly interpreted and will probably be amended. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Philippine Board of Censors reviewed 1,976 films, having an aggregate 
length of 5,588,082 feet, in 1935. In 1934, only 1,909 films were reviewed, 
but the footage was 5,754,268 feet. Of the films reviewed in 1935, 1,820 were 

American, 23 Filipino, 48 Chinese, 18 Japanese, 3 British, 7 Spanish, and 
3 from New Zealand. No film was entirely disapproved. Of the films reviewed, 
1,972 were approved without any cutting, and the remaining 4 were cut 1,377 

feet. 

COMPETITION- 

The films are 92 percent American. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

United States Copyright Relations. 



2487 



-135- 



PRODUCTION- 

There were 15 feature-length films to be produced in Tagalog in 1S36. 
One feature film in English with several scenes in color, for world distribu- 
tion. Also a few short subjects. 

TAXZS- 

Municipal taxes on theaters vary, the highest being PI, 800 per year 
for a license for a first-run theater in Manila. A bill has just been passed 
(but not yet signed by the President) imposing a 5 percent tax on admissions 
over 40 centavos. 

THEATERS- 

There are 211 theaters in the Philippine Islands. 
SOUND- 

There are 148 theaters wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1S35 - Positive sound 3,S70,23S ft. ^80,351 

Negative sound 1,600 ft. S53 

1236 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 3,544,502 ft. $81,933 

Negative sound 31,822 ft. $502 



POLAND 

LEGISLATICN- 

Existing restrictions include the general import and foreign exchange 
controls, which went into effect during the late spring and which include small 
charges for the filing of applications for import permits; an exhibitors quota 
requiring cinema owners to reserve 10 percent of their screen playing time for 
domestic features, if available, and a revised entertainment tax, eliminating 
reduced taxes for foreign films qualifying as of "artistic" or "educational" 
value, both of which became effective as of August 24, 1936. 

In connection with the general import control in Poland, foreign films 
were put on an import contingent basis. A global quota of 5,800 kilos was 
fixed for 1936, with the different importers receiving allocations in propor- 
tion to their average imports during 1933, 1934, and 1935. In cases where 



2487 



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importers would not derive sufficient product on this basis to warrant the 
existence of their exchanges, which particularly concerned new companies, the 
appropriate authorities agreed to make ne -essary readjustments by deductions 
from other companies more advantageously situated. 



CENSORSHIP- 



Early in 1936, the Polish censorship materially sharpened its regula- 
tions whereby, it was announced, producers should neither produce nor dis- 
tributors import film subjects including class struggle, riots of a revolu- 
tionary tendency, misery as a means for agitation, Russian background, or 
gangster and certain mystery sequences. 

Slight charges are levied for censor costs. 



COMPETITION- 



Distribution, based on trade statistics, for 1935 and the first half of 
1936, was as follows: 



1.9, 5 , 5 First 6 months, 1956 

■ Number of Number of Number of Number of 

Co untry fea tu res perce nt shorts features percent shorts 



United States 


145 


56.4 


283 


70 


56.0 


105 


Austria 


28 


10.9 


1 


9 


8.5 


1 


Germany 


25 


9.8 




9 


8.5 


2 


Poland 


15 


5.9 


98 


7 


6.7 


32 


France 


12 


4.7 


1 


6 


5.7 




England 


12 


4.7 




3 


2.8 




Russia 


6 


2.4 


2 








Czechoslovakia 


4 


1.6 










Switzerland 


3 


1.2 


1 








Denmark 


i 






1 


0.9 




Italy 


1 


* 










Hungary 


1 


* 




1 


0.9 




Palestine 


1 


* 


1 








Mixed 


3 


1.2 


51 






26 


Totals 


257 


100.0 


438 


106 


100.0 


166 



* Less than half of 1 percent. 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 



No changes occurred in the copyright law, full legal protection being 
granted foreign authors. 



2487 



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PRODUCTION-- 

There were 15 features, 9S shorts, and 1 dubbed version of an Austrian- 
made feature turned out locally during 1935, while 7 features and 32 shorts 
were produced during the first half of 1£36. 

Studios 



N?me 



Number of 

Location Conditio n T ype of Recording Appratus S tares Wired 



Falanga 
S finks 

Polska Akustyka* 



Warsaw 
II 



Wired Tobis-Klangfilm 
" British Acoustics 



* This studio is equipped for dubbing. 
TAXES- 

On August 24, 1S36, there was published in Journal of Laws No. 64, Item 
464, an ordinance of the Minister of Interior, dated August 14, 1S36, issued 
in agreement with the Minister of Finance and dealing with communal taxes on 
the public exhibition of films. The avowed aim of the ordinance is to sim- 
plify the taxation procedure, to maintain unimpaired this source of revenue, 
and finally to promote the Polish film industry. 

The revised regulations provide for a new classification of films, re- 
duced tax rates on films produced and dubbed in Poland, or when stamped by the 
censors as "Polish theme", the substitution, in the case of small towns and 
villages, of a turn-over or lump tax for the system of supplements on prices 
of admission, and exemption from taxation of certain new picture houses for a 
period of 5 years from their opening. 



General tax 



"Polish theme" tax 



In Warsaw 



60% of admission price 5% of admission price 



Cities with population over 

10,000 except Warsaw 35% 

Cities with from 25,000 to 

100,000 25% " 

Cities with from 10,000 to 

25,000 15% " 



II II 2^ II II II 

Cities of less than 10,000 A general tax not to exceed 4% of total turn-over. 



2467 



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Exhibitors qualifying under the 10 percent quota are eligible for rebates 
on normal taxes paid for films of non-Polish origin and those stamped "Dubbed 
in Poland". Other tax concessions are made for the playing of domestic pro- 
duct, long and short, except news reels; while tax reductions are made during 
the period May to August. 

The following rates, plus 10 percent for customs expenses, are charged 
(American exports enjoy conventional rates where they exist): 

Conventional Autonomous 

Rate Rate 
(zlotys per kilo) 

Negatives 80 200 

Positives 110 200 

(Samples for local printing 

are admitted duty free, under 

bond) 

Rawfilm 5.50 10 

Advertising material: 

Stills 8.50 

One-colored posters 2 

Colored posters 6 

Mats 60 80 

There are no laboratories for printing color positives, so the regular 
positive rates are applied for each print of a film imported. An appeal has 
been made to the authorities for special concessions in these cases. 

THEATERS- 

In the vast majority of cases, films are distributed through three ex- 
changes in Poland, Warsaw, Katowice and Lwow (formerly Lemberg), in which 
there are 657 cinemas wired for sound and 36 cinemas without sound. 

The total number is divided as follows: 

Warsaw Zone 

Total wired, 402. 

Total unwired, 25; with the wired houses situated in principal cities 
as follows: 



2487 



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Number of 

Pop ulat ion c inemas . 

Warszawa (Warsaw) 1,200,000 64 

Lodz 605,000 30 

Poznan (Posen) 247,000 14 

Wilno (Vilna) 196,000 8 

Bydgoszcz (Bromberg) 117,500 6 

Czestochowa 117,. ^00 5 

Lublin 112,000 6 

K atowice Zone 

Total wired, 149. 

Total unwired, 4; with the wired houses situated in principal cities as 
follows: 

Number of 
Population cinemas 



Krakow (Cracow) 220,000 13 

Katowice (Kattowitz) 120,000 7 

Sosnowiec 110,000 7 

Chorzow 100,000 5 

Lwow Z o ne 

Total wired, 106. 

Total unwired, 7; with the wired houses situated in principal cities as 
follows : 

Lwow (Lemberg) Population 320,000, 22 cinemas. 

SOUND- 

There are 657 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sou.nd 763,140 ft. $22,187 

Negative sound 389.205ft. $21,945 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive .sound 288,855 ft. $7,183 

Negative sound 423,633 ft. $19,332 



2487 



140- 



PORTUGAL 

LEGISLATION- 

There has been no special legislation since 1935 when local producers of 
motion-picture films obtained from the Government exemption from customs duty 
on all imports of machinery, apparatus, and material for the industry until 
June 4, 1937. 

CENSORSHIP- 

There has been no change in the censorship of motion pictures exhibited 
in Portugal. Legislation on censorship is contained in Decree No. 13,564 
(articles 133 and 135), dated May 6, 1927. 

Motion-picture censorship, exercised in Portugal by the "Inspeccao dos 
Espectaculos" , Ministry of the Interior, has caused distributors little diffi- 
culty. However, due to the militant antagonism of the Government toward com- 
munism, and to the conservative Catholicism of most cf the people, films which 
are of a communistic or antireligious nature are very likely to meet with dis- 
approval . 

COMPETITION- 

American films continued to dominate the local market during 1936, and 
again accounted for more than 50 percent of the total distribution. Other 
leading suppliers were France, Great Britain, and Germany. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Under Governmental Proclamation of July 20, 1893. 

PRODUCTION- 

During the year 1936, two 10-reel sound feature films were completed by 
Portuguese companies, and production was commenced on two others, scheduled to 
be completed in 1937. "0 Trevo das Quatro Folhas" (The Four-Leaf Clover), 
produced by Tobis Portuguesa at a cost of approximately 2,200,000 escudos 
(about $99,000), was released in June and was exhibited for 2 months at one of 
the leading theaters in Lisbon. It is understood that the film was not a 
financial success. 

The film "Socage" (concerning the life of a popular Portuguese poet 
by that name) was released on December 2, and is still being exhibited at a 
leading theater in Lisbon. The cost of production is estimated to have been 
2,500,000 escudos ($102,500), including a Spanish version. 



2487 



-141- 



"Cancao da Terra" (The Song of the Earth) under production by Continental 
Filmes Lda., at an estimated cost of 700,000 escudos, and "Revolucao de Maio" 
(The May Revolution), being produced by the Government Bureau of Propaganda, 
at an estimated cost of 1,200,000 escudos, have not yet been completed, but 
are scheduled for release in 1937. Indoor scenes and sound effects of all 
Portuguese films are taken at the Lumiar Studios of Tobis Portuguesa, the 
only sound studios in Portugal. 

TAXES- 

There were no changes in taxation during the year, but the Government 
still has under consideration the petition of the Portuguese Industrial Asso- 
ciation, presented in 1935, requesting the use of box office receipts rather 
than seating capacity as a basis for taxation. It is reported that the 
Government will probably act favorably on this proposal. 

THEATERS- 

There are 210 motion-picture theaters in Portugal. 
SOUND- 

There are now 180 theaters wired for sound in Portugal, 10 installations 
having been made during 1936. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 
Negative sound 



1,360,324 ft. $36,236 



1,127,664 ft. 
7,659 ft. 



$30,475 
$534 



PUERTO RICO 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no legislation affecting the importation of motion-picture films. 
CENSORSHIP- 

There are no censorship laws in Puerto Rico and no laws prohibiting 
minors from admission to motion-picture theaters. 



2487 



-142- 



COMPETITION- 

Of the films shown, 99 percent are American. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There are no copyright relations in Puerto Rico. 
TAXES- 

Very high. The following taxes are paid by theaters: income, excise 
tax on posters, insurance for employees, and municipal excise tax based on 
volume of business. 

THEATERS- 

Tliero are 100 theater.-3 on the island of Puerto Rico, 92 of which are now 
opsn. Ths combined seating capacity of these theaters totals 53,694 and the 
average cost of admission is 15 cents per seat. Theater programs usually con- 
sist of a feature and a short subject. First-run houses change their programs 
three times a week while other houses change them daily. 

The favorite types of picture are the sentimental dramas and musical- 
coraody filiiis. American stars are preferred, and English speaking films with 
super-imposed Spanish titles, and not the Spanish dubbed films, are the 
favorites . 

SOUND- 

There are 92 theaters wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 2,437,255 ft. $51,694 

Negative sound 36,035 ft. $889 

RUMANIA 

LEGISLATION- 

Although there have been certain deviations and alterations in the 
foreign-trade regime adopted by Rumania on December 1. 1935, its general frame- 
work and objectives remained the same, namely, the expansion of exports and 
the contraction of imports, the latter to be achieved through limiting by 
article and country of origin the goods which may enter the country. As a part 



2487 



-143- 



of the regime of restriction there also should be mentioned the exchange pre- 
mium, since December 1935, of 38 percent, charged by the National Bank of Ru- 
mania on all foreign exchange released for paying commercial debts abroad. 

For a time in 1S36 films and advertising materials could be imported 
outside the framework of the import quota system through the utilization of 
extraordinary compensation trading (barter) permits, but by a Journal of the 
Council of Ministers of November 6, 1S36 (No. 2,377), such operations are to 
be terminated on February 1, 1337, except for certai.n goods considered of 
economic necessity among which films and advertising materials are not in- 
cluded. 

On the other hand, importing films and advertising materials under the 
normal quota permit system has been scaewhat easier during 1336, and local 
distributors appear to feel fairly optimistic for the future. 

The greatest problem yet unsolved is the transfer of old commercial debts 
which accumulated before 1935 ar.d v^hich are considered as arrears. E::cept in 
the case of countries with payment agreements, arrears payments ere net 
permitted to burden current trade. In fact the National Bank appears to be 
waiting until it has a favorable trade balance with the United States before 
making any effort to liquidate such arrears due there. Some of these old 
debts have been liquidated through the costly and illegal black market but 
considerable s;.ms are understood to be still awaiting transfer. 

CEN2CRSHIP- 

Ccntrol over moving pictures is exercised in the name of the State by 
the "Commission of Control and Censoring of Moving Pictures" composed of 16 
membors r.cainated by the Ministry of the Interior and appointed by royal decree 
for a period of 4 years. A new regulation governing the censorship of films 
in Rumania, replacing the regulatior issued on February 8, 1334, entered into 
force on April 30, 1336 (Royal Decree No. 971 of April 27, 1336). The princi^ 
pal change was the transfer of control over motion pictures from the Ministry 
of Public Education to the Ministry of the Interior, Office of Radiophonic 
and Cinematographic Emmissions. On October 14, 1336, through Royal Decree No. 
2233, motion-picture control v/as transferred again, this time to the National 
Tourist Office, another dependency cf the Ministry of Interior. Although the 
tenure of the members of the Board of Censors is for a term of 4 years, this 
provision is not strictly observed. A new board of censors, replacing a board 
appointed for a period of 4 years on January 18, 1336, was named by Rcyal 
Decree No. 2233 of October 14, 1336. 

According to article 12 of the new regulation, films submitted for censor- 
ship are to be divided into three categories: 



2487 



-144- 



(a) Diverting films - those which tend to amuse the public with sub- 
jects taken from novels, stories, theater plays, special cinematographic 
scenes, etc., with contents which neither have the faults enumerated for in- 
jurious films nor contain in their entirety the qualities indispensable for 
classification as educational films. 

(b) Educational films - those which through their type and their por- 
trayal contribute to general instruction or education, under any forms, such 
as: historical films, with subjects taken from historical events with in- 
structive contents representing with truthfulness historical facts; geographi- 
ical pictures of general interest, including ethnological subjects; films 
popularizing science and technology; filns v/ith special educational subjects, 
such as hygiene and prevention of social diseases, social foresight and econ- 
omy, development of the spirit of sportmanship, expansion of understanding of 
art, etc.; national and international events of general interest; and cinemato 
graphic scenes v/hich combine artistic execution with a moral and educational 
background (art. 19 of the regulations). 

The fact that a film is made of a famed opera devoted to history, liter- 
ature, epic or dramatic art does not absolutely earn for it the qualification 
of "cultural" or "educational", if by vulgarization the presentation is ex- 
aggerated and in bad taste, and if historical episodes or works of literary 
or theatrical fame do not possess cultural and educational attributes. 

(c) Injurious films: Those which are held to present real or fictious 
life in such a way that they contribute to the perversion of the audience and 
constitute an incentive, even involuntary, to actions detrimental to public 
order. Such films are those which present criminal actions of a nature to 
initiate the audience in the technique of deliquency and the school of crime; 
political actions against public and social order, especially those which 
feature enemies among the categories of citizens or which suggest disregard 
of the laws; actions which may conceal propaganda against the structure, unity, 
or integrity of the State and the political and moral basis on which it is 
built, whether it be campaigns directed openly against the country and the 
Rumanian people, or an attempt is made to present in an exaggerated manner the 
qualities of other States and peoples with an evident tendency to suggest 
disadvantageous comparisons with Rumania and its people; episodes which may 
hurt the honor of the country or which by giving offense to other nations, 
may give rise to conflicts with other States; actions of a nature to kindle 
hatred and dispute against othar peoples or countries; scenes which may weaken 
the faith of the Nation in its energies and abilities or in the leaders of 
the State, diminishing the respect due from citizens towards supreme holders 
of power of the State; subjects which would diminish or mock the fundamental 
institutions of the State, satirizing, outraging the Monarchy, Church, Justice, 
Army, or School, even when the mockery or offense does not refer to conditions 
in Rumania but which results in weakening sentiments and obligations of the 
citizens towards those institutions; actions containing pornographic scenes. 



2487 



-145- 



obscene episodes of night clubs and taverns, disgusting images of debauchery 
and vice and, in general, any scenes of a nature to injure the morals of 
society and the standing discipline of the family; scenes of brutality, tor- 
ture, and terror which, through their violence, may produce nervous shocks in 
the audience; pretended historical films, the contents of which are evidently 
exaggerated, the deformity of the historical truth serving visibly to injure 
public institutions of the State or tending to inspire revolutionary instincts. 

It should be noted that article 41 of the new regulation, although up- 
holding the right of the Minister of the Interior, or the Under Secretary of 
State or Secretary General of this Department acting for him, to suspend or 
even cancel an authorization for reasons of public interest, does not give them 
the right to issue exhibition permits for films which have been refused au- 
thorization by the Board of Censors. This limitation was intended to end in- 
terventions in favor of banned films by influential politicians or others. 
The Board of Censors may approve the exhibition of a film after it has been 
cut or changed in accordance with its dictates. Titles, texts, posters, and 
programs are also to be carefully censored by the Board of Control. The title 
and the written texts, as well as advertising posters and the printed programs, 
must be in the Rumanian language. This eliminates the use of Hungarian or 
German subtitles and superimposed titles on American films. Another interest- 
ing provision is that children under 16 years of age may attend only educa- 
tional programs or programs of diverting films specially approved for children. 
While the previous regulation required the exhibition of educational films 
only, prior to 8 p.m. every Sunday and holiday, this provision in fact has 
never been respected because of the shortage of such films, and the new regu- 
lation omits this requirement but provides that on Sundays, only educational 
films must be exhibited prior to 1 p.m. 

Authorization is granted to the film and not to the person presenting it. 
Once approved, a film retains the authorization regardless of who is in-posses- 
sion of it. The authorization is granted for a period of 3 years from the 
date of issue If it does not contain special restrictions for certain re- 
gions, it is good for the whole country. The validity of the authorization 
is subject to the careful observance of all details mentioned in the final 
decision of the Commission. 

Local distributors are complaining against the attitude of the censors 
toward certain categories of pictures, which, although of an amusing char- 
acter, are always rejected. Films portraying gangsters, police, and historical 
subjects unfavorable to the monarchical regime are refused authorizations. 

COMPETITION- 

Approximately 80 percent of the films shown are American. The balance 
are divided among German, French, British, Austrian, and Russian films, in 
the order given. 



2487 



-146- 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Member of International Union, by Presidential Proclamation on May 14, 
1S28, President Coolidge issued a proclamation covering copyright reciprocity 
between the United States and Rumania. No change has occurred during 1936. 

PRODUCTION- 

During 1936 there was no local production except for shorts and news reels 
issued by the National Tourist Office in a very irregular manner and of no 
outside interest. Similarly for the 1936-37 season no production has been 
planned. The competent Rumanian authorities have tried, in the last 10 years, 
to establish a local film industry but in spite of all efforts and financial 
assistance obtained from the Government, the results have been nil. It is 
realized that the establishment of a national film industry would require 
large capital which, in view of the impossibility for exhibiting Rumanian 
pictures abroad on a commercial scale, would have to be supplied by the Gov- 
ernment alcne. In order to make possible the production of national pictures, 
(at first educational pictures only) the Council of Ministers issued a decree 
on May 18, 1934 (Monitorul Oficial May 18, 1934) establishing a national cine- 
matography fund. The local press and the cinematographic circles have often 
attacked the establishment and the management of this fund. Although collec- 
tions are estimated to have surpassed 70,000,000 lei, no real steps have been 
taken toward creating a national cinematographic industry. The annual revenue 
of this fund is estimated at some 40,000,000 lei. The fact that on October 
14, 1936, the manageraent of this fund was transferred to the National Tourist 
Office indicates that the Government has decided that the fund can be used by 
the Tourist Office for foreign propaganda v/ork to better advantage than would 
be the case should a national motion-picture industry be established. 

TAXES- 

Laws passed by Parliament for establishing the cinematography fund pro- 
vide a tax of 10 lei per meter for film passed by the censor; 1 leu on each 
ticket of admission to a motion picture show and a tax of 2.40 lei per meter on 
films presented for censorship to cover the administrative expenses of the 
board of censors. Besides these taxes, there is a tax of 1 leu for the muni- 
cipality and 2 lei for the aviation fund collected on each admission ticket. 
These taxes are looked on with great hostility by local importers and dis- 
tributors, but their suppression could not be secured in spite of a very strong 
press campaign. It is generally believed that these taxes will never be used 
for the creation of a national industry. 

The taxes and expenses which have to be paid by motion-picture exhibitors 
are as follows: 25 percent of the gross receipts to the State, 25 to 40 per- 
cent for film rentals, 10 to 12 percent for publicity and administrative ex- 
penses, 1 leu for each admission ticket for the national cinematography fund. 



2487 



-14~- 



2 lei frcji each ticket for aviation and 1 leu per ticket for the municipality. 
In addition, a tax varying from 200 to 6000 lei per month must be paid for mus- 
ical rights to the Rumaniar. Composers Association. 

Since Decemter 1, 1935, according to the new import and exchange regime, 
all imported merchandise is subject to a new 12 percent ad valorem tax, which 
is to be collected together with the other existing duties at the point of 
entry. An increase in the turn-over tax was also effected on December 1, 1935, 
by the adoption of new norms for determining average values. It raises the 
established value" on films from l.COO lei per lOD kilograms to 2,3D0 lei at 
which rate the regular 12.50 percent ad valorem turn-over tax is also assessed. 

THEATERS- 

There are in Rumania about 350 motion picture halls, 52 of which are 
located in Bucharest. 

SOUND- 

Almost all of the motion-picture halls are wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 
Negative sound 

SOUTH AFRICA 

LEGISLATION- 

There has been a complete absence of any legislation on films during 
1936. Standards of entertair.acnt a: e lather high, in fact the trade considers 
local standards well above the average, and good entertainment is demanded, 
irrespective of country of origin. There are no quotas or contingent laws on 
American films. 

CENSORSHIP- 

No change in the rigid censorship occurred during the year. The censor-- 
ship board has power to approve or reject a film unconditionally, or subject to 
a condition that it shall be shown only to a class of persons specified by the 
board, or after specified portions have been cut. The board shall not approve 



1,520,842 ft. $30,183 
7,681 ft. $225 



1,505,160 ft. $36,766 



2487 



-148- 



any film that prejudicially affects the safety of the State, is calculated to 
disturb peace or good order, prejudice the general welfare, or be offensive to 
decency. Invariably decisions of the board are upheld upon appeal. Censor- 
ship is so strict that distributors often turn down pictures and news reels 
that have been passed without touble in other countries, rather than risk 
subjecting them to censorship here. 

COMPETITION- 

There is a natural sympathetic feeling for British films, but the amount 
shown remains fairly constant at approximately 15 percent of the total. Ser- 
vice by air mail gives British news reels an advantage in timeliness over 
American news reels. 

PRODUCTION- 

Local production by African Film Productions is of a high standard, but 
in the past has been restricted, with several exceptions, to topical and 
scenic productions that are very well received both here and in connection 
with publicity work abroad. Gaumont British is about to film "King Solomon's 
Mines" in South Africa, where their work will most likely be confined to out- 
door scenes. African Film Productions will soon start work on an ambitious 
history of South Africa. It will be a complete South African production. 
Local production should be benefited by the introduction of films in the 
schools of the entire country by the Film Division of the Union Education 
Department. 

TAXES- 

Taxation has remained as high as heretofore, with the exception that in 
the Transvaal Province the tax on admissions of 1 shilling and less has been 
removed. High taxation, prevalent throughout the country, prevents a more 
rapid increase in the number of theaters, but as indications are that the 
present prosperity of the country will be maintained, there is not much chance 
of importations decreasing. 

THEATERS- 

There are about 300 theaters in South Africa. A new theater to seat 2,000 
people is under construction in Durban, and preliminary plans for one are under 
consideration in Capetown. One of the largest in Johannesburg was opened in 
the fall of 1936. 

SOUND- 

There are 250 theaters wired for sound. 



2487 



-149- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



4,419,599 ft 
11.362 ft 



$87,395 
»959 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3,611.985 ft 



$70 , 920 



SPAIN 



LEGISLATION- 

According to advices the Spanish revolution, more than anything else, 
prevented the establishing of a quota system on motion pictures in Spain during 
1936. The proposed law in part contained the following proposals: 

Protection and encouragement of national motion-picture production were 
the aims set forth in the decree project, which was made knovm in January 1936, 
and which was to be submitted to the Council of Ministers, establishing an 
exhibition contingent and assurance of exportation through the application of 
"contingents of compensation" whereby acquisition of Spanish films would be 
obligatory on the part of entities importing nonnational films. 

The Consejo de Cinematograf ica (Motion Picture Council) would be em- 
powered to issue regulations for the enforcement of the decree. 

Encouragement would also be given to the development of equipment and 
film manufacturing activities, and obligatory distribution and showing of edu- 
cational films would be effected with the object of raising the cultural 
level . 

The importer of foreign films which are not dubbed in Spanish in na- 
tional studios would be required to assign 12 percent of his gross receipts 
in Spain to the purchase or production of films entitled to be classed as 
nationally produced. 

Importers of foreign films which are dubbed in Spanish in national 
studios would be required to similarly devote 8 percent of their gross re- 
ceipts in Spain to such purchase or production. 

In order to obviate the signing of blanket or quota ccntracts in advance, 
it is provided that rental contracts shall not apply to more than a single 
production, the title of which is mentioned in the contract, the production 
having been shown to the managers of the theaters at a- private sh&wing. 
Rental contracts would be made on an official model of the Ministry of Agri- 



2487 



-150- 



culture, Industry, and Commerce, and a separate contract v/ould be required 
for each theater in which the film v/ould be shown. 

A license of importation would be required to be obtained through the 
Ministry of Agriculture, Industry, and Commerce for the importation of foreign 
films, and distributors would be obliged to obtain authorization for this 
from the Ministry to carry on their activities as such, binding themselves 
to the dispositions of the decree. 

The decree project above outlined is an example of a number proposed and 
supported by as many trade groups. Some would provide for taxes to be levied 
upon foreign films not dubbed in Spain, a higher exhibition tax for foreign 
films, a larger import duty on foreign films, but all are as one in proposing 
the application of a contingent sys':em. The percentage of nationally produced 
films which would be obligatorily e::hibited in return for the right to exhibit 
foreign films varies, but cne suggestion is said to provide for an initial 
quota of 2 Spanish films for each 10 foreign films. 

Ratification of the agreement entered into by exchange of notes between 
Spain and Peru on films considered "offensive" by either party is made by a 
decree of May 29, 1936 ("Gaceta de Madrid" of June 3, 1936, page 1989.) 

Each government contracts to prohibit the exhibition within its territory 
of films having reference to the other party and considered "offensive" by the 
latter. Such films are those considered derogatory or damaging to the prestige 
of either party. One government considering a film v/ithin the above classi- 
fication as affects itself will petition the other to prevent the exhibition 
of the "offensive" film within its territory. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Censorohip is officially applied at Madrid in the office of the Director- 
General of Public Safety. Few films, however, are initiatively barred by the 
official censor. 

Films may be withdrawn on protest of foreign embassies in Madrid and 
the Civil Governor of each province may ban the showing of a film deemed ob 
jectionable cn instruction from the Ministry of the Interior. 

COMPETITION- 

Approximately 50 percent of the films shown are of American make. 

Accurate figures on competitive exhibition of foreign films in Spain are 
officially lacking. Customs statistics give only weight in kilograms of im 
ported films which are subject to a duty of 25 gold pesetas per kilogram net 
weight when imported from the United States and 15 gold pesetas per kilogram 



2487 



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when imported from France and a number of other European countries. Imports 
are grouped in customs category No. 692 under the title, "Exposed film nega- 
tives or positives". 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The Spanish Society of Authors (Sociedad de Autores) protects the musical 
works of Spanish authors used in sound films. The fee charged is 3 percent 
of the total potential seat sale of the theater, i. e., as if every seat were 
filled. 

PRODUCTION- 

Production of motion-picture films in Spain during 1936 was greatly cur- 
tailed as the result of the construction strike at Madrid and the unsettled 
political situation. Total full-length film production for 1936, it is es- 
timated in the trade, will total only about 32 to 40 as compared to 50 last 
year. Capacity of Spanish motion-picture studios is placed at 80 full-length 
films annually. 



On entering the motion-picture field in Spain, an exhibitor finds himself 
enmeshed by a maze of taxes. The principal State taxes are: The real-estate 
tax ( contribucicn territorial), the industrial tax (contribucicn industrial), 
and the workman's retirement (retire obrero) . In the first two cases, apprais- 
als, discounts, percentage taxes, and surtaxes are levied. 



There are 1,600 theaters wired for sound. 

Of the unwired theaters, at least 600 operate irregularly as they are 
connected with clubs, cafes, etc. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES^ 



THEATERS- 



There are approximately 3,500 theaters in Spain. 



SOUND- 



1935 - Positive sound 



Negative sound 



11,872.221 ft. 
601,609 ft. 



$268,692 
$19,277 



1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



5,257,848 ft. 
468 181 ft. 



$105,233 
$ 16,616 



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SWEDEN 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no quota or contingent laws existing in Sweden on motion- 
picture films. 

CENSORSHIP- 

As a rule films showing suicides, terrifying scenes, and other crimes 
contrary to general law and morals, as well as acting that may have a bad 
influence, are forbidden. However, there seems to be no hard and fast rule 
on this subject. Children under the age of 15 years may attend the showing of 
certain films, only. Each film which is approved for showing is classified as 
"children permitted" by the board of censors. Films in which murders, robber- 
ies, hold-ups, gangster life, etc. appear fall in the "children prohibited" 
class. 

During 1935 the Swedish Film Censoring Bureau examined a total of 5,924 
films (including copies) having a length of 4,304,887 meters. Of these, 2,067, 
with a length of 1,876,538 meters, were American; 3,055, with a length of 
1,689,620 meters, were Swedish; and 802 films, having a length of 738,729 
meters, were from other countries. Of the total number, 3,378 films, with a 
length of 906,238 meters, were news reels and so-called nature or travel 
films, comics, and other "shorts". 

During the first 6 months of 1936 (latest available figures) the total 
number of films (including copies) censored was 2,811, having a length of 
2,104,215 meters. Of these, 987, with a length of 976,014 meters, were Amer- 
ican; 1,441, with a length of 757,995 meters, were Swedish; and 383, with a 
length of 370,206 meters, were from other countries. Of the total number, 
1,651 films, with a length of 404,954 meters, were news reels and other 
"shorts". 

All pictures, except a few educational and nature films, distributed 
in Sweden during 1935 and 1936 were with sound. 

COMPETITION- 

About 50 percent of the films shown in Sweden are of American mcike. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Established by Royal Decree No. 381, dated May 30, 1919, and amended 
by Royal Decree No. 74, dated April 24, 1931. 



2487 



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PRODUCTION- 

During 1935, 27 feature films were produced in Sweden. Aktb. Svensk 
Filmindustri, Stockholm, made 12 feature films in its own studio in 1935, the 
same number as in 1934. In addition, this company produced a large number of 
short subjects and news reels during the year under review. The number of 
feature films made by the other Swedish companies, all of which are located in 
Stockholm, in 1935, is given below; 



Name of Company Number 



Aktb. 


Europafilm 


4 


Aktb. 


Wivefilm 


3 


Aktb. 


Iref ilm 


2 


Aktb. 


Svensk Talfilm 


2 


Aktb. 


Triangelfilm 


1 


Aktb. 


Anglofilm 


1 


Aktb. 


S.B.D. 


1 



Svenska Aktb. Nordisk 
Tonefilm 1 



TAXES- 



During 1935, taxes levied on tickets sold by motion-picture houses in 
towns and cities in Sweden (for rural districts no statistics are available) 
amounted to 3,491,717 crowns (today's rate of exchange; Swedish crowns 3.97 to 
$1.00 U. S. currency), against 3,050,599 crowns in 1934. The total proceeds 
from tickets sold in towns and cities in 1935 amounted to 23,278,116 crov/ns. 
(This figure is an estimate only as thp exact amount cannot be calculated.) 
Taxes are governe'-l by Royal DecreeP of May 30, 1919, No. 256, and Ji-ly 16, 
1919, No. 529, and are levied as follows: 

P rice of Tick et Tax 
(Sw. Crovms) (Sw. Crowns) 



0.50 0.05 

.50 to 1.00 .10 

1.00 to 1.50 .20 

1.50 to 2.00 .30 

2.00 to 2.50 .40 

2.50 to 3.00 .50 



THEATERS- 



There were about 1,620 theaters at the end of 1935; 1,641 on October 31, 

1936. 



2487 



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SOUND- 

All of the 1,641 theaters are wired for soiind, which was also the case at 
the end of 1S34. The fev.' remaining places in various parts of the country 
that are not wired for sound, such as lodge halls, etc., but in which moving 
pictures are shown, do not have regular performances. Approximately 400 of 
the total number of cinemas in this country operate only from one to three 
times a v/eek and in several cases the sound reproduction apparatus is trans- 
ported from theater to theater. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 
Negative sound 



4.337,197 ft. 
17,210 ft. 



$97,136 
$516 



3,458,341 ft. 
4,043 ft. 



S71,S14 
$79 



SWITZERLAND 

LEGISLATION- 

During 1936 a Committee was appointed by the Ministry of the Interior to 
look ii.to the feasibility of establishing a doaiestio film producing industry. 
The pri;-cipal advocates of the project were the tourist associations which 
ho^.jed that a Swiss film industry would help to attract foreign tourists and 
various local authorities who regarded the projsct as a means of creating 
opportv-.nities for employment. The location for this nev/ Sv/iss film studio to 
be constructed with the aid of government subsidies, narrowed itself down to 
Zurich and Montreaux. A sharp di&pute between these two cities resulted in 
the Commissio.-i which had advocated the establishing of a large domestic studio 
to reverse i's previous decision that the Federal Government should abstain 
from granting a subsidy for this purpose "under the present condition". A 
final decision upon this question will be rendered by the planned Swiss film 
chamber. 

In order to prevent nev/ cinemas from being opened, the Swiss Association 
of Cir..Gma Ov.'.iers has put a baa on new members. Since, by agreement with the 
film rental agencies, only member theaters may rent films, it is practically 
impossible for a new exhibitor to be certain of a constant supply of films. 

CENSORSHIP- 

There is no Federal censorship, control being vested in the individual 
Cantons. While the authorities are generally liberal, restriction is more 



2487 



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marked in the French-speaking section of the country, especially in the Cantons 
of Valais, Vaud, and Fribourg. 

COMPETITION- 

Of the films shown, 50 percent are American; German, and recently Austrian 
films, constitute an important source of compet_tion to American films which 
still lead all other films on the Swiss market. French films, which rank third 
in popularity, are also being shown in German-speaking Switzerland in the 
original version, while Italian pictures are exhibited only in a comparatively 
small area, chiefly the Canton of Ticino. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The convention adhered to on June 14, 1934, between the "Societe des 
Auteurs, Compositeurs et Editeurs de Musique", Paris, and representatives of 
Swiss cinemas, continues in force. The convention is retroactive to July 1, 
1933. 

PRODUCTION- 

Motion-picture production is limited chiefly to advertising media and 
educational films, aerial views of the Alpine regions, skiing contests, etc. 
The leading producer of such short films is the "Praesens Film A.G.", Zurich. 
Attempts to establish a domestic film industry producing feature pictures have 
thus far been unsuccessful. 

TAXES- 

Amusement taxes are fixed by the various Cantons, averaging from 10 to 
15 percent of the price of the ticket. The practice of taxing theater tickets 
has become more widespread during the past 2 or 3 years; at present only the 
Cantons of Schaf fhausen, Glarus, Aarau, and Thurgau do net impose amusement 
taxes . 

THEATERS- 

The restrictions against the construction of new theaters have been 
tightened and, as a result, the number of theaters and their combined seating 
capacity declined in 1936. There are at present 334 cinemas in Switzerland 
with a combined seating capacity of 128,800, distributed as follows: 

Seating 

. - . , _ T heaters C apacit y 

... - . , - .G&rman and Italian Switzerland 

— . - French. -Switzerland. - 

Total 



215 30,500 
119 . 58.500 
334 128,800 



2487 



156- 



SOUND- 



There are 328 theaters wired for sound. With the exception of about one- 
half dozen theaters in small distant localities, all cinemas in Switzerland 
are equipped for the exhibition of sound films. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 1,391,017 ft. $27,566 

Negative sound 23,322 ft. $818 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 983,604 ft. $18,691 

Negative sound 1,380 ft. $138 



SYRIA 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no agitation against American motion pictures. On the contrary 
they are enjoying increasing popularity. 

C ENSORSHIP- 

News reels are being severely censored, and scenes of the Abyssinian 
War, Spanish revolution and Fascist or Nazi demonstrations are cut. 

Censorship Decree: 

Art. 1. No moving pictures shall be produced in the States under French 
Mandate for public exhibition on paid tickets or invitation without prior 
authorization from the High Commissioner. 

Art. 2. The exportation of moving pictures produced in the States of 
the Levant under French Mandate shall also be subject to prior authorization 
from the High Commissioner. 

Such authorization shall be given only after exhibition of the picture 
before the Censorship Commission provided for in article 2 of Decree No. 165/LR 
of July 30, 1934, and under the conditions stated in that decree. 

Any portions of the picture which may be cut by the Commission, shall be 
kept at the "Direction de la Surete Generale". 

Article 2 of this decree affects to a certain extent the activity of an 
American concern, which has a number of times sent its cameramen to turn out 



2487 



-157- 



news reels in Syria. Under this provision, a foreign company can no longer 
take pictures in Syria and ship its undeveloped negative films, since it has 
to exhibit them before the Censorship Commission. As there are no up-to-date 
studio laboratories in Syria, such company v/ould have either to arrange for 
the local development of its films or to renounce its local production. 

Beirut is the only port through which films may be imported. Films may 
not be cleared from the customs unless a special permit is first secured from 
the Surete Generale (French Police) . A commission established by the French 
High Commission previews the films censoring them as to morals, public secur- 
ity, respect to religious and races, and political propaganda. The censorship 
foe is Syrian piaster 0.32 per meter. 

COMPETITION- 

According to local motion picture importers, the proportion of American 
pictures shown during 1936 is approximately the same as during 1935, namely, 
about 40 percent. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

None. 

PRODUCTION- 

A Syrian and an Italian have established a motion-picture studio under 
the name of "Scciete de Cinematographie Lumnar". They have produced a sound 
Arabic picture (Dans les Ruines de Baalbeck) . but until now no Syrian screens 
have shown it. However, a small sketch produced by this company was shown a 
few months ago in Beirut; the sound was fairly good, but the photography and 
acting were poor. 

TAXES- — ■ 

The former 10 percent gross receipts tax has been replaced by the fol- 
lowing: 

Syrian p ias ters 

0.60 per seat (occupied Qr;;not) at every performance in first- 
class theaters; 

.30 per seat (occupied or not) at every performance in second- 
class theaters; 

0.05 per seat (occupied or not) at every performance in third- 
class theaters. 



2487 



^158- 



This tax is assessed as follows: 

In full during the months of January, February, March, April, May, 
November and December, two-thirds in June and October, none during July, Au- 
gust, and September. 

Censorship tax: 

35 Syrian piasters per 100 linear meters of silent film; 

25 Syrian piasters per 100 linear meters of sound film 
In practice, no silent films are now imported. 

THEATERS- 

There are 24 theaters in Syria. 
SOUND- . 

All of the 24 theaters are wired for sound. x— 

French is the language of the talking films in Syria, although Arabic 
is the language of the population. However, from time to time English-talking 
films are shown, but unless the picture is remarkably good, receipts are far 
less than those of a French-talking picture. 

Egypt is reported to have established a modern studio for Arabic talkies. 
When such films are produced, their success in Syria seems assured. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 465.126 ft. $6,586 

Negative sound — - 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 408,579 ft. S4,819 
Negative sound 

TRINIDAD 

LEGISLATION- 

Returns from film exhibitors for the year 1935 show that the requirements 
of the Cinematograph (British Films) Ordinances of 1932 and 1934 have not been 
complied with. The following approximate percentages of British films shown at 
Port-of-Spain theaters indicate the extent of failure to comply with the law: 



2487 



-159- 



British feature films quota 25 percent - about 5 percent shown. 

British shorts quota 25 percent - about 4 percent shown. 

The unpopularity of such British films as had been obtainable and the prohibi- 
tive cost of the class of British film v/hich could compete with good foreign 
films are given as the reasons for noncompliance with the law. (* - See last 
page under Trinidad). 

CENSORSHIP- 

Public criticism of the existing system has resulted in the appointment, 
by the Government, of a Board of Censors composed of 10 members. During 1935 
here were 8 entire rejections, 16 deletions, and 21 films classed "for adults 
only". Films were rejected and deleted for the following reasons: predomin- 
ance of criminal acts; scenes and incidents offensive to religious or national 
sentiment; riots, murders, and shooting scenes; bedroom and vulgar dancing 
scenes; drunkenness and immorality scenes, and those depicting gangsters and 
crooks. One picture was rejected because of inaudibility, and one because of 
its unsuitability for exhibition in this Colony. 

COMPETITION- 

Of the films shown, 90 percent are American. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Same as United Kingdom. 
PRODUCTION- 

A small number of local news reels. 

taxes- 
No special taxes are imposed on theaters and there is no tax on theater 
admissions. The exhibitors continue to pay a censorship fee of $1 for each 
reel of sound length film up to 1,000 feet, and 12 cents for each additional 
100 feet or fraction thereof. This fee also applies to "trailers" (pre-views) . 

THEATERS- 

There are 19 theaters in the Crown Colony of Trinidad and Tobago, British 
West Indies; 6 in Port-of-Spain, 3 in San Fernando, 1 in Scarborough, Tobago, 
and 1 each in 8 smaller towns in the Colony. 



2487 



-160- 



"Westerns" still rank first with a large percentage of the population, 
with musical comedies running a close second. Several of the outstanding hits 
of 1936 have been shown to capacity houses, in many cases with standing room 
only, and in one c two instances, people were turned away. The bringing in of 
the higher class of pictures can be dated from the time of the forming of two 
new companies in Trinidad, v/hich operate a chain of theaters in Port-of-Spain, 
as well as in the country districts. When the theaters were controlled by 
one company, the pictures shown were old and the equipment was deplorable. 

There are two shows daily at the principal theaters, at 4:30 and 8:30 p.m. 
The smaller theaters have only a night performance. Several theaters in Port- 
of-Spain have started a children's program on Saturdays, the first performance 
at 9 a.m., and the second at 1 p.m., besides the regular matinee and evening 
p rograms . 

The usual daily program consists of one news reel, either American or 
British, one short, several "trailers" of coming attractions, and one feature. 
Programs are changed on Saturdays and Tuesdays, and on one day during the 
week, usually Thursday, at both afternoon and evening performances, two old 
features are presented, at reduced prices. 



SOUND- 



All of the 19 theaters are wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 2,177,815 ft. $32,555 

Negative sound 910 ft. $90 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 1,193,963 ft. $18,621 

Negative sound 1,532 ft. $19 



(*) On December 17, 1936, the Governor issued a Proclamation amending the 
Cinematograph Ordinance of 1932, in which the following quotas for British 
films have been fixed: 



Percentage of Bri- Percentage of Bri- Percentage of Bri- 
tish films to total tish news films (in- tish West India 
Annual films exhibited. (Ex- eluding British West films to total Bri- 
Period eluding new films.) India films) to total tish news films ex- 
news films exhibited hibited. 



1937 15 50 10 

1938 17i 50 10 
Subsequent years 20 50 10 



2487 



-161- 



TURKEY 

LEGISLATION- 

During 1935 attacks were made in the local press against an American 
concern which was engaged in the production of a film portraying the unfor- 
tunate lot of Armenians in Turkey during the World War. These attacks ceased 
after assurances had been received through official channels from the inter- 
ested producers that the film would not be released without the approval of 
the Turkish Ambassador in Washington, D. C. Since this incident there has 
been no anti-American agitation. 

CENSORSHIP- 

During the first 10 months of 1936 five foreign films were "cut" and 
the exhibition of two foreign and one local film was prohibited by the local 
board of censorship. 

At the instance of the Minister of Interior, the Council of Ministers 
approved on July 29, 1936, Decree No. 2/5092 laying down new regulations for 
the censorship of motion-picture films and scenarios in Turkey. This law which 
was published on August 13, 1936, and repeals previous legislation, provides 
that the Board of Censors shall be composed of a delegate from the Chief of 
Staff, the Director General of the Press, the Ministry of Interior and the 
Ministry of Education. It further provides that a re-examination of films 
approved by the Board of Censors may be ordered if and when any government 
department or agency objects to the film. In such cases the film is to be 
revised at Ankara by another board. It also provides that films shall be re- 
viewed at Ankara if, upon an unfavorable decision by the Board of Censors in 
Istanbul, the interested local exhibitors make an appeal for such revision. 

Article 8 of the new law prohibits the projection of the following types 
of films: 

(1) Films embodying political propaganda of any sort. 

(2) Films vilifying or reflecting unfavorably upon any nation or race. 

(3) Films representing oriental people and countries as being savage or 
primitive . 

(4) Films contrary to good manners and morals or tending to dishonor the 
Army. 

(5) Films tending to encourage crime. 



2487 



-162- 



(6) Films containing religious propaganda. 

(7) Films which are in such damaged or worn condition as likely to be 
injurious to the eyesight. 

The law further stipulates that all titles and explanatory matter regard- 
ing a film shall be in the Turkish language only and shall be correctly worded 
and well written. 

COMPETITION- 

During the first 10 months of 1936 a total of 112 feature sound films 
were exhibited in Turkey 56 American, 27 French, 22 German, 4 English, 2 
Austrian, and 1 Russian. Of the 56 American films, 14 were exhibited in the 
English version, 2 in original French, and 7 were dubbed and exhibited in 
Turkish. Of the remaining 33 American films, 31 were exhibited in "dubbed" 
French, 1 in "dubbed" Spanish, and 1 was a silent film. In addition, 52 
American news reels in French and Turkish versions were released during the 
first 10 months of 1936. 

During 1936 American feature films, both in the original version and in 
dubbed French, continued to retain their popularity in Turkey because of the 
excellence of their direction, scenery, costumes, plots, music, and the renown 
of their stars. 

French films released during the first 10 months cf 1936 were again much 
better than those exhibited in 1934 or earlier and were perhaps superior to 
those shown in 1935. In consequence they have increased somewhat in popu- 
larity. 

German musical comedies and operettas continued to retain their popu- 
larity. Although the German language is an adverse factor, the majority of 
German films exhibited during the past 10 months drew good houses. 

As has been the case in previous years, films in the English language fail 
to draw large audiences unless they are feature products of such unusual in 
terest that they tempt the public to disregard the language factor. 

During the 10 months of 1935 the patronage of the local public has been 
prompted largely by the considerations outlined in the foregoing paragraphs. 
Motion-picture exhibitors report that without any marked change in the prefer- 
ence for films of any particular nationality the public is becoming increas- 
ingly particular in its selection of feature films. As has been previously 
the case, films in the original French version or in dubbed French continue to 
enjoy a large preference over films in other foreign languages. The fact that 
the great majority of American feature films released during the past 10 months 
of 1936 were in original or dubbed French accounts, at least in part, for their 
dominant position in this market. 



2487 



-163- 



The local public continued to show decided preference for good rausical- 
comedy films and for films dramatizing well-known French novels. Increasing 
interest was also manifested in films portrayin well-known historical inci- 
dents. Preference for films with a happy ending continues to prevail. Good 
American "reviews" also continue to draw large houses. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Turkey is not a signatory of the Berne Convention for the protection of 
artistic and literary rights, but the principal motion-picture exhibitors in 
the city of Istanbul have an agreement among themselve.s whereby they forego 
the exhibition of pirated films in competition with members of their group who 
have bought the Turkish rights to a fiirn It is said that the conditions of 
this agreement are strictly adhered to and no case of infringement of member- 
ship rights has occurred during the past 7 years. 

PRODUCTION- 

There are two studios in Istanbul equipped to produce ^jound films. During 
the year one of the local studios produced a film picturing national scenery, 
etc. The various authorities, including the Army, are reported to have ex- 
tended very considerable assistance to the producers of this film, but upon 
its completion the film did not meet with the approval of the Government and 
the censorship authorities and its exhibition was prohibited. This prohibition 
has just been lifted. The preparation of this film is said to have involved 2 
years of effort and the expenditure of about $40,000. 

The two local studios dubbed into Turkish during the past 10 months 
the Gaumont-British film "Chu Chin Chou", the German film "Artisten", and six 
American pictures. 

THEATERS- 

In the absence of official statistics or reliable estimates no accurate 
information is available on the number of motion picture theaters existing in 
Turkey at the present time. It is believed that there are approximately 121 
active motion-picture theaters with a total seating capacity of 46,600 to 48,- 
000, including about 30 provincial theaters exhibiting silent pictures. 

SOUND- 

There are 93 theaters wired for sound. 

The use of sound equipment in provincial establishments is believed 
to have sustained a fair increase during the first 10 months of 1936. The 
major portion of sound equipment installed during this year was of German 
origin. 



2487 



-164- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 649,114 ft. $15,573 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 646.640 ft. $16,289 

Negative sound 



UNITED KINGDOM 

LEGISLATION- 

The committee appointed by the Board of Trade to consider the question 
of the renewal or amendment of the Cinematograph Films Act of 1927 issued its 
report late in November. Its chief recommendations are the continuance of 
quota, to start with 20 percent for the exhibitors, steadily increasing year 
by year until, at the end of the 10-year period, 1948, the quota shall be 50 
percent; the establishment of a Film Commission to administer the Act and to 
pass on the quality of all films made for renters' quota purposes, the encour- 
agement by the Government of financing fresh capital for British film enter- 
prises, a separate quota for short films, reciprocal treatment with the Do- 
minions on the subject of film quotas, a change in the definition of what is a 
British film, the strengthening of the provisions of the present Act prohibit- 
ing blind booking and block booking. 

The recommendations have not as yet been drafted into legislation. There 
is much feeling on the part of the renters against the recommendations which 
provide for such a large quota of British films and before the Act is renewed 
or amended in the light of the Committee's report further hearings v;ill 
doubtless be held. 

At present quotas are set as follows: 

Renters' Quota 



Year ending March 31- Percent 

1929 7i 

1930 10 

1931 10 

1932 12i 

1933 15 

1934 17i 

1935 17^ 

1936 20 

1937 20 

1938 20 



2487 



-165- 



Exhibitors' Quota 



Year ending Sept. 30- Percent 
1929 5 

1930 7i 

1931 7i 

1932 10 

1933 12i 

1934 15 

1935 .. 15 

1936 . . 20 

1937 20 

1938 20 



CENSORSHIP- 

The British Board of Censors consists of four members and a president, 
the latter being the Right Hon. Lord Tyrrell of Avon. Originally this board 
was set up by the trade in 1913, but now it is independent of both the trade 
and the government. The government has never found it necessary to interfere 
with its activities. The decisions of the British board are closely followed 
by local "watch or vigilance" committees of city governments throughout the 
British Isles. 

COMPETITION- 

During 1936 approximately 217 British feature films were released, 
divided as follows: 



Ace Films Ltd 4 

Associated Producing & Distribution Co 4 

Associated British Film Distributors Ltd 15 

Joseph Best 1 

British Lion Film Corporation Ltd 8 

Butchers Film Service Ltd 8 

Columbia Pictures Corporation Ltd 10 

Concordia Films Ltd 1 

Exclusive Films Ltd 1 

First National Film Distributors Ltd 9 

Fox Film Co. Ltd 11 

G. B. Distributors Ltd 20 

General Film Distributors Ltd 16 

Leonard M. H. Handley 1 

International Cinematograph Corp. Ltd 1 

Mancunian Film Corporation Ltd 1 

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Ltd 14 

National Provincial Film Distributors Ltd. 2 

Paramount Film Service Ltd 17 

2487 



-166- 



UNION OF SOVIET SOCIALIST REPUBLICS 



LEGISLATION- • 

The foreign trade of the Soviet Union is a monopoly of the Government. 
All contracts made abroad for the exportation of goods from that country are 
made by agencies of the People's Commissariat for Foreign Trade, or under 
authorization of that Commissariat Foreign-trade transactions are entered 
into, as a general rule, through representatives of State economic and com- 
mercial organizations authorized to enter directly into foreign-trade trans- 
actions under the general supervision of the People's Commissariat for Foreign 
Trade. In the United States, the principal purchasing and selling agency is 
the Amtorg Trading Corporation, 261 Fifth Avenue, New York City. 

The agency through which motion-picture films are imported and exported 
is the Intorgkino, Maly Gnezdnikovski Pereulok No. 7, Moscow. The agency in 
the United States of this organization is Amkino Corporation, 723 Seventh 
Avenue, New York City, to which appropriate inquiries may be addressed. The 
Intorgkino, in purchasing foreign films no longer adheres to a policy of ex- 
change to the same degree as before and has purchased several films from for- 
eign firms which have not purchased Soviet films in exchange. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Very strict. 

COMPETITION- 

Almost entirely Soviet films, exceedingly few foreign films are being 
shown. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

None . 
PRODUCTION- 

The following pictures have been produced and exhibited during the 1935-36 
season: 



Sound pictures 

Silent pictures 

Pictures instructive in technical 
hygiene and school subjects: 



62 



30 



Silent 

Current events 



Sound... 



20 
109 
29 



2487 



-167- 



Pathe Pictures Ltd 6 

Producers Distributing Co. (U. K. ) Ltd 1 

Progressive Film Institute Ltd ' 1 

Radio Pictures Ltd 21 

Re-Union Films Ltd 3 

Twickenham Film Distributors Ltd 7 

United Artists Corporation Ltd 11 

Universal Pictures Ltd 6 

Warner Brothers Pictures Ltd 8 

Wardour Film Ltd 9 

Total 217 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright Ordinance of 1911 as amended. Great Britain entered into 
copyright relations with the United States on July 1, 1891, extended April 9, 
1910, further extended January 1, 1915, Great Britain is a member of the 
International Copyright Union at Berne. 

PRODUCTION- 

There were 217 British films released during 1936. The number of films 
to be produced in 1937 is extremely doubtful, because of the uncertainty in 
the trade at the present moment. Trade estimate is in the neighborhood of 
225. There are now 26 studios in England, all wired for sound. 

THEATERS- 

There are 4,950 theaters in England. The building of cinema theaters 
continues to grow, and it is ani,icipated that during 1937 there will be an 
additional 200. 

SOUND- 

All of the 4.950 theaters are wired for sound. The number of silent 
cinemas is negligible and is limited to a few showings in temporarily li- 
censed buildings. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 14,269,517 ft. $382,012 

Negative sound 1,604,836 ft. $ 94,380 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 13,230,428 ft. $351,503 

Negative sound 1,505,129 ft. $ 69,134 



2487 



168- 



Pictures instructive in military 

subjects 3 

Animated pictures : -.• 1 

Intorgkino is not a producing organization. It exports films produced 
by other organizations operating under the supervision of the Chief Adminis- 
tration of the Motion Picture Industry of the Union of Soviet Socialist Re- 
publics . 

TAXES- 



High. 



THEATERS- 



Moving-picture theaters of various types in the Soviet Union total 
34,990. 



SOUND- 



There are 2,285 regular theaters equipped for sound films. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1935 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



62,052 ft. 
8,660 ft. 



$2,950 
$229 



1936 - (First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



27.226 ft. 
35,699 ft. 



S716 
M33 



URUGUAY 



LEGISLATION- 



Since the beginning of the year 1936, importers of motion pictures in 
Uruguay have been granted free controlled exchange (dirigido) without any 
restrictions. 

CENSORSHIP- 

None. (The Theater Inspection Department of the Montevideo City Govern- 
ment maintains a censorship beard which, however, has failed to function as 
such for years. ) 



COMPETITION- 



Of the films shown 80 percent are American, and 20 percent foreign. 
(Argentine, French, German and British.) 

2487 



-169- 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

American Copyright Convention held at Buenos Aires August 11, 1910, and 
ratified July 13. 1914. 

PRODUCTION- 

Local production is restricted to occasional news reels on local sub- 
jects. The amount of films produced locally is considered negligible. 

TAXES- 

Municipal tax of 6 percent on admissions in Montevideo. 
THEATERS- 

There are approximately 128 theaters in Uruguay. (It is impossible to 
obtain official figures.) There are 70 theaters listed in Montevideo with 
38,190 seats. (Montevideo figures are considered accurate.) It is difficult 
to make any estimate for the rest of the country. One firm has prepared a 
list which shows 58 theaters actually in operation, with 24,510 seats, in 
other parts of the country. 

SOUND- 



There are 124 theaters wired for sound. In the interior 54 of these 
theaters are wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1935 - Positive sound 2.122,791 ft. $40,022 

Negative sound 

1936 - (First 10 months) 

Positive sound 2.565.045 ft. $45,674 

Negative sound 1,668 ft. $50 



VENEZUELA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no quota or contingent laws, duties, etc., prejudicial to the 
interests of American films in Venezuela, nor is there any adverse American 
film agitation. On the contrary, American films are generally preferred 
by the public. 



2487 



-170- 



CENSORSHIP- 

There is no national censorship law in Venezuela. Pictures are supposed 
to be censored in each State in which they are released, but generally the 
original censoring in Caracas is sufficient. As a rule, the censorhip is not 
strict so far as morality is concerned, but more so regarding communistic 
propaganda. Very few, if any, films are refused censorship, and distributors 
generally cut out voluntarily possibly vulnerable parts of their films. 

COMPETITION- 

Of Lhe films shown, 91 percent were American in 1935; the remaining y 
percent were distributed between Germany, England, France, and Spanish coun- 
tries (in the order named). 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

American productions enjoy the same copyright protection in Venezuela as 
local productions, in the absence of a specific copyright treaty with the 
United States, and in accordance with the provisions of the 1928 Pan American 
Code of Private International Law, especially articles 1 and 115 of the 
latter (Venezuelan Official Gazette, Extraordinary Number of April 9, 1932). 

The Venezuelan copyright law (Official Gazette of August 12, 1928) makes 
provision for the copyrighting of motion pictures along with other "Intellec- 
tual Property". Such copyright is valid for a period of 10 years. The pro- 
ducer or editor must indicate on each copy: the commercial signature of the 
company; year of publication; and whether or not registered. For registration, 
the Registrar of Copyrights must be supplied with the following data: (a) 
Name, calling, and address of soliciting party; (b) nationality of latter; 
(cj title of the work; (d) class to which it belongs; (e) name, calling, 
and address of author or translator; (f) nationality of latter; (g) name, 
calling, and address of proprietor; (h) nationality of latter; (i) establish- 
ment v/here the impression or reproduction has been made and the procedure em- 
ployed therefor; (j) place and date of first publication; (k) edition and 
number of copies; (1) format of the work; (m) size and all other pertinent 
date for the identification of the work. Five copies must be deposited with 
the Government. 

Article 180 of the same law provides that in copyrighting motion pictures 
of domestic origin, the registrar of copyrights need only be supplied with: 
(1) names of artists; (2) title of manuscript of play; (3) place and date of 
production; (4) a copy of the first and last scenes of each of the parts 
making up the film. 

2487 



I 



-171- 



PRODUCTION- 

There is no regular production of motion pictures in Venezuela. There 
are a fev/ small enterprises making occasional travelogs and news reels, par- 
ticularly the Laboratorio Nacional in Maracay and Caracas. 



There is a Federal amusement tax based upon the number of seats in the 
theater. Each State may also impose additional direct admission taxes. In 
Caracas and the Federal District, where all new pictures are first released, 
a new tax of 10 percent has been levied on the value of entrance tickets, 
entering into effect on November 1, 1936. 

In the new Venezuelan Customs Tariff Law which became effective on 
October 23, 1936, the import duties on printed cinematographic films were 
increased from 1.9569 to 2.60 bolivares per gross kilogram. Rates on un- 
printed films remained approximately the same, while projectors and accessories 
were increased from 1.9569 to 5.00 bolivares per gross kilogram. The official 
exchange rate at present is 3.93 bolivares per United States dollar. 



The exact number of theaters throughout the country cannot be determined, 
for in the Interior, bull-rings and other open-air spaces are used, as well as 
vacant buildings which may be converted temporarily into a theater. At present 
there are approximately 111 theaters operating in Venezuela, but this number 
is not fixed. In the city of Caracas and immediate environs, there are about 
35, and in the Maracaibo district, about 20. No silent pictures are shown. 



All theaters in Venezuela are either wired for sound or, in the Interior, 
possess portable sound equipment. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



1935 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,314,514 ft. 
1,711 ft. 



$50,115 
$120 



1936 - (First 10 months) 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,135,423 ft. 
19,424 ft. 



$43,194 
$977 



2487 



-172- 



YUGOSLAVIA 

LEGISLATION- 

Under the regulations prescribed by the Minister of Commerce and Industry 
of Yugoslavia, the management and control of production, import, and trade in 
motion pictures in that country has been placed in the hands of a State Film 
Central, whose duties will include also the sponsoring of domestic production 
and the aiding of educational efforts and propaganda for pictures of cultural 
value. 

Registration fees are collected by the Central as follows: (a) For 
pictures of foreign origin for amusement, as well as for advertising all 
films, an amount corresponding to one-half of the censor fees; (b) for all 
cultural pictures and domestic pic lures, one-fourth of the censor fee. In 
effect, registration fees will amount to approximately %Q for each American 
feature brought on the Yugoslav market. 

Theaters are obliged to show at every performance one or more films of a 
cultural nature. They must also shov/ domestic pictures of at least 5 percent 
of the total length of programs shown quarterly. For theaters giving daily 
shows and which change programs less than six times monthly, this percentage 
is increased to 10. To ascertain whether these obligations have been fully 
complied with, the Central will issue forms that cover each performance. 
For these forms one dinar is charged. 

For purposes of control over the importation of and the traffic in films, 
the film enterprises will submit for registration and ccnfirmation the ori- 
ginal agreements and invoices covering films purchased abroad. 

The registration of such agre£.nj;;ts will be made by the State Film Central 
on special forms issued for thai ^«rpose. The film enterprises, together 
with the original agreements, will submit the above forms in which they will 
record a brief summary of the agreements. Each form must bear the seal and 
responsible signature of the enterprise. The State Film Central will keep 
these forms in its files for checking purposes. 

The State Film Central will collect for these forms 25 dinars each for 
films up to 60 meters in length, and 50 dinars each for films exceeding that 
length. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Yugoslav censorship of moving-picture films is, for political rea- 
sons, very strict. This censorship is in the hands of the Ministry of Com- 
merce and Industry, control of the State Film Central having been trans- 
ferred to that Ministry. 



2487 



-173- 



COMPETITION- 

Of the films shown, 65 percent are American. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There are no copyright relations with the United States. 
PRODUCTION- 

There were 100 films, consisting of cultural, news and advertsing fea- 
tures, produced during 1935. 



A special tax is assessed on films imported or produced in the country, 
as follows: (1) On cultural films, 1.50 dinars per meter; (2) on other 
films, 3.00 dinars per meter. Films produced in the country pay one-half of 
the above taxes until the expiration of the term of 10 years, following which, 
presumably, they will be taxes as are imported films. 

For the examination of films, either foreign or domestic, 0.45 dinars per 
meter, and for other expenses, 0.10 dinars per meter, aggregating 0.55 dinars 
per meter. 



THEATERS- 

There are 318 theaters in Yugoslavia. 
SOUND- 

There are 263 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



1935 



Positive sound 



819,393 ft. 



$18,256 



Negative sound 



1936 



(First 10 months) 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



625,936 ft. 



$11,729 



-oOo- 



2487 



MOTION PICTURE THEATERS 



EUROPE - 1936 



Germany 

England 
Itsly 
France 

3f>9in 

Czechoslovakia 
Siveclen 
Belgium 
Juslria 



Poland 
Hungary 
Denmark 
Rumania 

SiVil/ethnd 

Yc/goslay/a 

l/clher/andr 

^/oryvsy 

f/nland 
Portugal 
Irish Free Sf^ale 
Greece 
Turkey 

Latvia 

Bulgaria 

Lithuania 

Estonia 

Albania 




No. 






NUMBER 


OF 


THEATERS 


1 




of 
Sound 


0 


100 


200 


300 


AOO 


500 


600 






THOUSANDS OF THEATERS 



lO 



15 



20 



25 



30 



3-4. 990 



• 77?/^ figure includes, urban, mrcil theaters both those 
e<fu/pped y/ith stationary snd portable projectors 
where motion pic /^u res are showr?. 




Buresu of Foreign snd Domestic Cofrtfnerce 



DO 88?>7 



MOTION PICTURE THEATERS 
LATIN AMER^ltA - 1936 



ArgenfinJi 
Brszfl 
Mexico 
Cuba 
Columbia 
Peru 
Ch//e 
Uruguay 
Venezue/9 



Pueth /iico ' 
Panama 
Ca3f<s Bica 

Ecuador 

SaJyador 
Hondurmts 
Ni'c^r^ua 
Br Guiiina 
Oom Sepif^fic 

Boliviff 
Ttinic/acI \ 
Fr W Indies j 
Jsmaics 
Ber/nuc/ifs 

Nelh. WeaiJndfes 
Bahamas 
Barbados 
Br. Honduras 




U. S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE 

DANIEL C. ROPER, Secretary 

BUREAU OF FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC COMMERCE 

ALEXANDER V. DYE, Director 



REVIEW 
of 

FOREIGN FILM MARKETS 




1937 



Prepared in 
MOTION PICTURE DIVISION 
Nathan D. Golden, Chief 



U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE DANIEL C. roper. Secr.ror, 

BUREAU OF FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC COMMERCE Alexander v. Dye. Director 

Aulttant Dlrectort: NATHANAEL H. ENGLE. F. H. RAWLS. and LACET C ZAPP 
AiBUtant to the Director: RANDOLPH BUNN 

Washington Divisions and Chiefs 



AdminUtrative Aasiatant: Samuel 
H. Day, Acting. 

Acoount$: H. W. Haun. 

Automotive-AeronautioB Trade: 
Irving H. Taylor. 

Chemical: Cbarles C. Concannon. 

ttommerdal Intelligence: Frank 
B. EUdrldge. 

Commercial Lavit: Guerra Everett. 

Correspondenee: R. H. Brasel. 

District Office: Robert Sevey. 



Drafting, Photographic, and Ex- 
hibits: N. Kckhardt, Jr 

Economic Research: Lowell J. 
Cliawner. 

Editorial: Grtffitb Evane. 

Electrical: John H. Payne. 

Foreign Commerce Service: H. 
Lawrence Groves. 

FHles: W. P. Smith. 
Finance: Grosvenor Jones. 
Foodstuffs: C. Roy Mundee. 
Foreign Tariffs: Henry Chalmers. 



District Offices and Managers 

Atlanta, Ga.: W. H. Schroder, 826 New Post Office Building. 

Birmingham. Ala.: Harry J White. 242 Federal Building. 

Boston, Mass.: Harold P. Smith. 1800 Customhouse. 

Buffalo, N. T.: John J. Love, Chamber of Commerce Building. 

Charleston, 8. C: C. W. Martin, Chamber of Commerce Building. 

Cleveland, Ohio: Joseph W. Vander Laan. 1704 Terminal Tower Building. 

Chicago, III.: George C. Payne, 333 N. Michigan Avenue. 

Dallas, Tex.: Harold M. Young, Chamber of Commerce Building. 

Detroit, Mich.: Richard Stephenson, 371 New Federal Building. 

Bouaton. Tea. : Chester Bryan, Chamber of Commerce Building. 

Jacksonville, Fla.: C. Parker Persons, Federal Building. 

Kansas City, Mo.: David I. White, % Chamber of Commerce. 

Los Angeles, Calif.: Walter Measday, 235 Chamber of Commerce Building. 

Louisville, Ky.: Shelton M. Saufley, 417 Federal Building. 

Memphis, Tenn.: Noland Fontaine, 229 Federal Building. 

Minneapolis, Minn.: Silas M. Bryan, 201 Federal Office Building. 

New Orleans, La.: Harold C. Jackson, 408 Maritime Building. 

New York, N. 7.: John F. Sinnott, 602 Federal Office Building, Church 

and Vesey Streets. 
Norfolk, Va.: W. Duval Brown, 409 Federal Building. 
Philadelphia, Pa.: William M. Park, 1510 Chestnut Street. 
Pittsburgh, Pa.: Charles A. Carpenter, 1013 New Federal Building. 
Portland, Oreg.: Howard E. Waterbury, 216 New Post Office Building. 
8t. Louis, Mo.: Clyde Miller, 635 New Federal Building. 
Ban Franoiaco, Calif.: John J. Judge, 311 Customhouse. 
Seattle, Wash.: Philip M. Crawford, 809 Federal Office Building. 

Cooperative Offices 

(Under direct supervision of Washington headquarters) 
Cincinnati, Ohio, Royal L. Gard, Chamber of Commerce Building. 
Denver, Colo., Elizabeth Pettus, 201 New Customhouse. 
Indianapolis, Ind., Francis Wells, Chamber of Commerce Building. 
Milwaukee, Wis., Hugo Gehrke, Milwaukee Association of Commerce. 
Mobile, Ala., Annie Howard, U. S. Courthouse and Customhouse Building. 
Rochester, N. T., Andrew P. Moody, Chamber of Commerce. 
Savannah, Ga., Joseph G. Stovall, Chamber of Commerce. 
Wilmington, Del., Margaret V. Donnelly, 317 New Federal Building. 

Cooperative Offices 

Jointly supervised by district offices and local commercial organizations. 
Address: Foreign Trade Secretary, Chamber of Commerce, with 
following exceptions: (1) United Chambers of Commerce, (2) 
Associanon of Commerce, (3) Manufacturers' Association, (4) 
Maine State Chamber of Commerce, (6) Department of Conserva- 
tion and Development, (6) Department of Agriculture and Com- 
merce. 



Akron, Ohio. 
Anniston, Ala. (1) 
Baltimore, Md. (2) 
Beaumont, Tex. 
Binghamton, N. Y. 
Bridgeport, Conn. (3) 
Charlotte, N. C. 
Chattanooga, Tenn. (3) 
Columbus, Ga. 
Columbus, Ohio 
Dayton, Ohio 
Brie, Pa. 
Fort Smith, Ark. 
Port Worth, Tex. 
Greensboro, N. C. 
Hartford. Conn. (3) 



Keokuk. Iowa 
Lake Cbarles. La. (2) 
Laredo, Tex. 
Longvlew, Wash. 
Lowell, Mass. 
Miami, Fla. 
New Haven, Conn. 
Newark. N. J. 
Oakland, Calif. 
Oklahoma City, Okla. 
Omaha. Nebr. 
Pensacola, Fla. 
Portland, Maine (4) 
Providence, R. I. 
Raleigh. N. C. (5) 
Richmond, Va. 



Rockford, 111. 
San Antonio, Tex. 
San Diego, Calif. 
San Juan, P. R. (6) 
Spokane, Wash. 
Springfield, Mas^ 
Syracuse, N. Y. 
Tampa, Fla. 
Toledo, Ohio 
Trenton, N. J. 
Tacoma, Wash. 
Waterburv. Conn. 
Wichita, Kans. 
Worcester, Mass. 



Foreign Trade Btalittici: B. A. 
Tupper. 

Forest Products: Phillips A. Hay- 
ward. 

Leather and Rubber: Everett O. 
Holt. 

Machinery and Agricultural Imple- 
ments: L. M. Lind. 



Metals and minerals: 

Harding. 



Balpb u 



Marketing Research: 
White. 



Wllford L. 



Motion Picture: Nathan D. Golden. 

Regional Information: Louis Do»- 
eratzky. 

Specialties: Thomas Burke. 

Textiles: Edward T. Pickard. 

Tobacco: B. D. Hill. 

Transportation: Tboa. Lyons. 



Foreign Offices 

American commercial attaches are in charge of all the offices, except 
those Indicated by an asterisk, in which case an American trade eom- 
missioner is in charge. All of the Department of Commerce foreign 
offices except Madrid have the cable address AMCOMAT. 

Athens, Greece: Karl L. Rankin, 6 Lykiou Street. 

*Batavia, Java: Donald W. Smith, Kali Besar, West 2. 

Berlin, Germany: Douglas P. Miller, Bellevuestrasse 8. 

Bogota, Colombia: Clarence C. Brooks, Edlflclo del Banco Hlpotecarlo de 
Colombia. (Mall : Apartado 798.) 

Brussels, Belgium: Thomas L. Hughes, 27, Avenne des Arts. 

Buenos Aires, Argentina: Wm E. Dunn, Avenlda B. S. Pena 567. 

Cairo. Egypt: James T. Scott, Apartment No. 18, 4 Rue Baehler (Kan 
el Nil). 

'Calcutta, India: Basil D. Dahl, 10 Cllve Street 

Caracas, Venezuela: Osborn S. Watson, Esqnlna Mercaderea (AltM). 

(Mall: Apartado 1825.) 

Copenhagen, Denmark: Julian B. Foster, Bornholmsgade No. 1. 

Chtatemala, Guatemala: Howard H. Tewksbury, 6a Avenlda Sur, Nam. 1 

Habana, Cuba: Albert F. Nufer, Horter Bldg., Obispo 7. (Hall: 
Apartado 2229.) 

The Hague, Netherlands: Jesse F. VanWickel, American Legation. 
Istanbul, Turkey: Julian E. GUlespie, American B^bassy, Rue Cabrlstaa. 

Johannesburg, South Africa: Clayton Lane, Commercial Att«di«, 42 

Standard Bank Chambers, Commissioner Street 
Lima, Peru: Julian C. Greenup, Ediflcio Italia, Jlron Ayacncho 191. 

(Mail: Box 1995.) 
London, England: Lynn W. Meekins, American Embassy, 1 Grosvenor 

Square, London, W. 1, England. 

Madrid, Spain: Calle Alfonso XI, 7. (Temporarily closed.) 

•Manila, P. I.: J. Bartlett Richards, 465 San Vicente. 

Mexico, Mexico: Thomas H. Lockett, American Embassy, Calle Nln BS. 

(Mail: Apartado 2097.) 
Ottaica. Canada: Henry M. Bankhead, United States Legation BDildlng. 

(Mail: Box 213.) 

Panama, Republic of Panama: Robert G. Glover, National City Bank 

Building, Avenida Central. (Mall: Box 346.) 

Paris, France: Daniel J. Reagan, 'acting commercial attache, 2 Aveaos 

Gabriel. 

Prague, Czechoslovakia: Edward B. Lawson, Ara Building, Perlovi f. 
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Walter J. Donnelly, American Embassy, Avenlii 
Nacoes. (Mail : Caixa Postal 570.) 

Rome, Italy: Charles A. Livengood, American Embassy, Rome (6). 

Santiago, Chile: Merwin L. Bohan, 7» Plso, Ediflcio Sud Ameriei 

(Mail: Casllla, 27-D.) 
Shanghai. China: Julean Arnold, 61 Canton Road. (Mail: Box 605.) 

'Singapore, Straits Settlements: Harold D. Bobison, Boom 7-a Oceas 
Building. 

Stockholm, Sweden: Charles E. Dickereon, Jr., Kungsgatan 30. 
'Sydney, Australia: Earl C. Squire, Yorkshire House, 14 Spring Strset 
Tokyo, Japan: Frank S. Williams. American Embassy. 
Vienna, Austria: Gardner Richardson, UI Lnstig-PreangasM 9. 
Warsaw, Poland: Thonnod O. Klath, Al. UJa2dowskie 47, 



UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE 
Daniel C. Roper, Secretary 

Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce 
Alexander V. Dye, Director 



REVIEW OF FOREIGN FILM 
MARKETS DURING 1937 



By 

Nathan D. Golden, Chief 
Motion Picture Division 



March 1938 Price 10 Cent 



2670 /.|^ » 



F OREWORD 



Motion pictures form a very significant portion of American export 
business. Their distribution in world markets means substantial profits 
to our picture producers and, moreover, has been influential in stimulating 
our general export trade. It is therefore highly essential that timely data 
on foreign motion-picture markets be made available to our film interests. 
This need is especially felt at present because of the uncertainties and 
problems that confront our film exporters. 

Outstanding among such problems are those created by the rapid rise of 
nationalistic sentiment and the consequent ambition of various foreign coun- 
tries to develop their own domestic motion-picture industries — with attend- 
ant hampering restrictions on American and other filis. 

It is the purpose of the present study to stimulate the exports of Ameri- 
can motion pictures by presenting a wealth of detailed facts on legislation, 
censorship, competition, taxation, and similar relevant matters in 1937 in 
practically every country in the world. The survey has been prepared in the 
Motion Picture Division, mainly on the basis of facts supplied by the Foreign 
Commerce Service of this Bureau and by representatives of the Department of 
State, whose invaluable cooperation is gratefully acknowledged. 




Alexander V. Dye, 
Director. 



2670 



REVIEW OF FOREIGN FILM MARKETS DURING 1937 



by - Nathan D. Golden 
Chief, Motion Picture Division 
Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce. 

Foreign government restrictions, high taxes, exchange controls, tighten- 
ing censorship in a number of countries, growing national tendencies to 
"coddle" feeble local film industries — all these factors were again strongly 
evident in the foreign motion-picture scene during 1937. The "totalitarian" 
trend in various areas brought significant repercussions in the film business. 
The undeclared hostilities in the Far East, the Civil War in Spain, and the 
unsettled conditions in^ other parts of the world have occasioned our American 
film distributors considerable concern and have unquestionably resulted in 
substantial losses of revenue. It is naturally rather difficult to give any 
dependable estimate of the extent to which the foreign revenues of our motion- 
picture industry were affected by these adverse factors. 

On the other hand, on« may confidently and vigorously assert that Ameri- 
can films retain a gratifying popularity with nearly all foreign audiences — 
that they are ordinarily received with admiration and enthusiasm. — and that 
the spontaneous demand for them is genuinely powerful. 

Restrictions against film imports were considerably intensified by 
certain governments during 1937, and new quotas are looming on the horizon of 
1938. Chief among the countries where new quota legislation is expected is 
England. The workability of the quota legislation in Australia and New Zealand 
is something that only the next 12 months can answer. 

While Germany has a quota act, censorship is the real bugaboo in the dis- 
tribution of American films. Dual censorship is in vogue in that market. 
American films coming into Germany are subject to the approval first of the 
Contingent Office, and subsequently of the Board of Censors. The former per- 
mits or disallows the entry of the film simply on the basis of the personnel 
concerned in its production and distribution. The Board of Censors reviews 
the film itself, approves or rejects it, requires cuts and alterations, etc. 
"Dubbed" German text also is censored and must be approved by the Board. The 
entire German motion-picture industry has now been regimented under government 
control. Subsidies are paid to producers from taxes and from contingent li- 
censes to German film exporters. New regulations enacted by decree on August 6 
1937, now require that permission must be obtained from the Reich Film Chamber 
for the establishment of any new enterprises for the production, distribution, 
preparation, or performance of motion-picture films. 

In France, new censorship regulations promulgated by the Government's 
Board of Censorship provide for the banning of films that might affect the 
prestige of the French Army or other governmental agencies, or provoke diplo- 
matic incidents with foreign countries, or which show crime or criminals in 
such a way as to have an injurious influence on the minds of youth. It is 



2670 



understood that the French Minister of National Education is preparing a film 
bill which would provide for cooperative control and operation of the motion- 
picture industry. Certain sections of this legislative measure are expected to 
provide for the virtual nationalization of the film industry. The bill is said 
to include provisions for "pre-censorship" , a "dubbing" tax, a central film 
syndicate, a central cinema commission, and a central collecting agency, 
which would control all monies in the film industry, collect all revenues from 
the release of films, and, in reality, supplant completely the distributors 
as they are now constituted, The decisions of these proposed dictatorial 
bodies would be absolutely binding on every person in the film industry. It 
is, of course, not certain that such a measure will be adopted, but, if it 
should be, American companies would be confronted with great difficulties in 
France. 

Taxes and labor limitation imposed in Mexico have militated against 
our American interests doing business in that market. There are intimations- 
from Brazil of some sort of legislation which might affect distribution of 
our films during 1938. Such developments are rather disconcertingly common. 
Several other nations apparently contemplate attempts to legislate a domestic 
motion-picture industry into being at the expense of our American interests .- 

As proof that an industry cannot be effectively legislated into being, 
one need only look at Great Britain. Ten years ago there was inaugurated a 
Quota System designed to assist and promote a national industry. During the 
past 10 years Great Britain has produced more films than ever before. But 
ordinarily they were not of the type enjoyed by the motion-picture public 
of the world. Seemingly, they were not even enjoyed by the British public. 
The result was that theaters, to stay within the law and meet their quota 
footage were obliged to show these pictures at hours during the day when 
patronage was either nil or at its minimum. 

Great Britain during 1937 produced 225 feature films, of which but a 
handful received world distribution, without which they cannot be financially 
successful. It might perhaps be best if the British producers would produce 
fewer pictures, whose chief ingredient should be quality and audience appeal, 
instead of concentrating upon inferior quantity productions which have been 
given "artificial respiration" through legislative quotas and contingent sys-- 
tems. 

Quality pictures and not quantity is what the public desires, whether 
it be in France, England, Czechoslovakia, or any other part of the world. Laws 
may be put on the statute books of nations to force the exhibition of domestic- 
made motion pictures, but it is the inherent values of the pictures themselves 
which determine whether picture fans throughout the world will want to see 
them or not . : 

During the years 1935 and 1936, money embargoes were eased up to ^soiiife. 
extent, but 1937 saw a more stringent application of foreign-exchange restric- 



2670 



-3- 



tions in many nations throughout the world. Few markets of South America are 
without exchange-control restrictions. Restrictions in Europe on foreign 
exchange are often so drastic that it is virtually impossible to get money out 
of some of the markets. The same applies to Japan and China and other parts 
of the Far East. 

In Rumania, the distribution of American films is in danger Qf becom- 
ing complicated by difficulties over the payment of customs duties and income 
taxes . 

In the Balkan Peninsula, as elsewhere, censorship troubles frequently 
obtrude. To cite a single example, one finds that in Greece, whose govern- 
mental system is now strongly authoritarian, one may expect prompt banning 
of motion pictures that are even remotely connected with political or social 
revolutionary movements of any nature, and the prohibition normally applies 
even to historical films portraying events in the French Revolution more than 
a century and a half ago. 

In Austria there appears to be a movement for new restrictions against 
American Tilms. While no official confirmation has been forthcoming, it is 
expected that the new restrictions will probably take the form of a law to 
provide for increased titling in Austria. Such legislation, if enacted, 
will increase the cost of distribution and will work a hardship upon our Ameri- 
can distributors to the extent of making the market unprofitable to do busi- 
ness in. 

Foreign-exchange control, high import registration fees, a dual form 
of censorship, exorbitant taxes, and the question of the right of American 
companies to do business in Czechoslovakia, combine to make the Czechoslovak 
market a constant source of anxiety and vexation to American film distribu- 
tors. A clarification of all these regulations is expected, and some con- 
cessions may be received under the Reciprocal Trade Agreement now being nego- 
tiated between the United States and Czechoslovakia. 

In Egypt nationalistic feeling is still running high, and Egyptian pro- 
ducers are pressing upon the Government their recommendations that legislation 
should be enacted for all cinemas in Egypt requiring them to show a quota of 
Egyptian films, in order to encourage the infant Egyptian film industry. While 
the Government is favorable to the general policy of aiding local industries, 
it is expected that this proposal will not be favorably acted upon, as the size 
of the local film industry quite obviously does not warrant such a form of 
assistance. However, the problem of the proper means of encouraging the 
Egyptian motion-picture industry is being given serious consideration by the 
Government . 

In Italy the agreement between the American film companies and the Gov- 
ernment permitting the importation of 250 American films and the right to 



2670 



-4- 



export 20,000,000 lire expires in June 1938. Whether this agreement will be 
extended remains to be seen. Up till July 1937, theaters in Italy were com- 
pelled by law to show 1 Italian picture for every 3 foreign films. A Minis- 
terial decree of July 1937 changed this, and the radio has been reduced to 1 
Italian picture for every ? foreign pictures. Tn Italy all films must be 
"dubbed" in the Italian language, and such "dubbing" must be done in Italy. 
On June 21, 1937, the "dubbing" tax on films over 1,000 meters was 30.000 lire 
for each film "dubbed", this was increased to 50,000 lire, with a surtax apply- 
ing to films which earned more than 2,500,000 lire. The surtax amounts to 
15,000 lire for every 500,000 in excess of the 2,500,000 lire up to a maximum 
tax of 110,000 lire. On films between 500 and 1,000 meters, this "dubbing" 
tax and surtax are reduced by half, and there are no "dubbing" taxes for films 
below 500 meters. 

In Argentina there is a possibility that the Institute Cinematograf ico 
Argentine, an official agency created in 1935, empowered to regulate all 
phases of the film industry in Argentina, will propose some sort of quota or 
contingent law in the future, favoring a domestic industry. 

The Japanese market for American films is threatened with several discour- 
aging factors. After the present supply of American pictures already placed in 
that market is used up, it is not improbable that Japan will cease thereafter 
to be a field of importance to the American industry. With Japanese occupation 
of certain parts of China, restrictions on American motion picture activities 
paralleling those in Japanese-controlled Kwantung Peninsula and in "Manchukuo" 
may be imposed in those areas of China also. Film restrictions and an embargo 
on the shipment of monies were put in effect in Japan in September 1937, as 
a means of conserving the finances of the country; while such barriers are op- 
erative on other industries doing business in this region, they are particular- 
ly aggravated so far as the motion-picture industry's stake is concerned. 

During the year 1937 foreign motion-picture production totaled approxi- 
mately 1,809 feature films, as compared with 1,400 features in 1936. The 
Far East and Near East led with a total of 959 features for 1937, an increase 
of 285 pictures over 1936. The leading producer in this region was Japan, 
with 500 films, with India furnishing 350, China 52, the Philippines 32, Egypt 
19, and Australia 6. 

Europe produced a total of 760 feature films during 1937, 39 feature 
films more than were produced during 1936. Of the 760 pictures produced, the 
following countries made the largest contributions: England 225, Germany 125, 
France 123, Russia 60, Czechoslovakia 47, Italy 37, Hungary 35, Sweden 25, 
Poland 20, Finland 14, Denmark 13, Austria 10, Belgium 6, Portugal 6, Norway 4, 
Switzerland 3, Netherlands 3, Turkey 2, Latvia 1 and Rumania 1. 

Production in Latin America during 1937 totaled 90 feature films. This 
is an increase of 34 features for this region over 1936, when 53 films were 



2670 



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produced. Leading producing countries were as follows: Mexico 52, Argentina 
30, Brazil 4, Peru 2, and Uruguay and Cuba 1 each. 

Increased foreign film production during the past year significantly 
bears out the contention that foreign countries are bent upon establishing 
their own producing industries. While this product does not secure much 
distribution outside of the countries' own boundaries, it nevertheless tends to 
reduce the playing time of our American films. 

Exports of American motion pictures, both negative and positive sound 
and silent, to all markets of the world, for the year 1937, totaled 215,721,956 
linear feet with a declared value of $4,797,641, as compared with 209,651,404 
linear feet, valued at $4,531,639 for the year 1936. A breakdown of the 
above totals is shown in the following table: 

12 months 1937 12 months 1936 

Quantity-Feet Value Quantity-Feet Value 

Negative- 

-iient films 3,038,623 $113,689 2,143,939 $92,167 

Sound films 9,586,631 $ 354,578 9,904,111 $ 362,035 

Positive- 
Silent films 2,851,039 $ 87,362 1,695,980 $ 51,670 
Sound films 200,245,663 $4,242,012 195,907,374 $4,025,767 



Total- 215,721,956 $4,797,641 209,651,404 $4,531,639 

With the increased restrictions imposed upon motion pictures by for- 
eign governments one discerns a marked tendency to prevent the motion picture 
from maintaining the truly international character or position which it has 
held for so many years. Hollywood still maintains its reputation for inter- 
nationalism, as it knows no barriers in assembling the finest of talent and 
technicians from all parts of the world. In many foreign countries, bent upon 
establishing their own domestic film industry regardless of the methods em- 
ployed, the motion-picture screen is being used primarily for the dissemination 
of nationalistic propaganda. 

Such policies sometimes react in the opposite direction, as evidenced 
in those markets which have created domestic industries to bolster nationalism. 
Exhibitors in some markets are forced by government decrees to hold domestic- 
made films for longer runs than the subject merits, despits the evident aver- 
sion to these films on the part of patrons. A striking revulsion on the part 
of foreign theater patrons might conceivably come about in 1938; they may 
become so surfeited with this type of propaganda film that they may act to 
induce their governmants to abolish quotas and foreign-exchange restrictions 
and thus permit American pictures to be shov/n, so that they may get what they 
pay for when they go to the theater, namely, g , ood entertainme nt . 

2670 



The true character of the "film industries" which ardent nationalistic 
interests are vainly striving to create in certain foreign countries may be 
vividly illustrated by brief quotations fron two reports which appear in the 
follcTing pages . Regarding the "motion-picture industry" of one of the smaller 
(but important) western European countries, we learn that "production facili- 
ties are not adequate, and the industry is not only poorly financed but 
precarious, film producers leading what amounts to a hand-to-mouth existence. 
The technique of the local men is not comparable with that shown in American 
films". In a large country in southeastern Europe we find that "the existing 
companies are small, poorly organized, and inadequately financed. Under such 
conditions they are unable to do any serious work. It is believed that most 
of them will eventually go out of business." That, then, is the situation in 
two nations which are endeavoring — in a tentative and sporadic manner — to 
conjure up a film indastry which would doubtless be inherently uneconomic . 

The problems of rising nationalism, of quotas, discrimination, subsidy 
and tariff barriers will have to be adjusted if American business is to 
operate on as wide a scale as heretofore. 

During 1S37 American motion pictures were shown, in the more than 80 
countries herein reviewed, to the extent of 70 percent of the screen time of 
all theaters. In some countries this percentage ran as high as 95 percent. 

To be really sound and legitimate, a motion-picture industry in any 
country must stand upon its own feet and cannot look to its government to 
legislate it into vigorous existence, either through laws limiting its com- 
petitors from freely marketing their products or through subsidies to local 
producers made possible through devious methods at the expense of foreign 
distributors. 

American motion pictures are the life-blood of the theaters through- 
out the foreign markets of the world, because they are the best that man has 
created. Without them theater operators would have difficulty in keeping 
their theaters open. Yet foreign countries are constantly harassing our 
American companies and making it more difficult for them to distribute our 
pictures, which may justly be called the "bread and butter" of foreign ex- 
hibitors. 

In their struggle to hold the high and richly deserved position which 
they have won abroad, American motion pictures will rely in the future as in 
the past on the qualities that foreign audiences have always so keenly appre- 
ciated — the qualities of splendid story-value, great variety of theme and 
locale, superlatively fine acting by artists from every country, brilliant 
scenic investiture, technical proficiency, amazing ingenuity in the devising of 
special effects, and, in general, vivid humor and truly compelling drama, all 
combining to create engrossing entertainment which appeals to foreign audiences 
from Stockholm to Capetown and from Valparaiso to Rangoon. 

* * * 



2670 



-7- 



AFGHANISTAN 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no restrictions on tho exportation of currency from Afghanistan 
which would affect American motion-picture firms doing business in that coun- 
try. 

There is no Afghan legislation that discriminates against American films, 
or that might otherwise restrict or prevent the distribution of American 
motion pictures. 

CENSORSHIP- 

A committee of the Afghan Ministry of Education censors the films exhibit- 
ed in Afghanistan. Since October 1936, films have been censored at the rate 
of about 100 per annum. 

While no information is available as to the number of films rejected, 
it is understood that objection is raised to scenes which are immoral in 
the eyes of the orthodox Mohammedan; for example, those showing excessive 
drinking, nude or scantily clad women, or passionate love-making. 

COMPETiriON- 

It is estimated that over 50 percent of the films exhibited in Afghanistan 
are American, the remainder consisting mostly of Indian pictures. Since no 
attempt is made to provide titles in Pushtu or Persian (the principal languages 
of Afghanistan), the American films which have proved popular are those in 
which the story can be easily followed from the pictures. Action and feats of 
prowess are enjoyed by the Afghan theatergoer. Where music is stressed, the 
Afghan audience definitely prefers Indian pictures. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

It is not believed that there is any Afghan legislation which protects 
copyrights or foreign producers from piracy. 

PRODUCTION- 

Motion pictures are neither produced nor "dubbed" in Afghanistan, 
TAXES- 

The only motion-picture theater in operation in Afghanistan is owned by 
the Government. No taxes are imposed on theaters or on the distribution of 



2670 



- -8- 



motion pictures in Afghanistan. No duty is payable on films which are re- 
exported. 

THEATERS- 

There is only one motion-picture theater in operation in Afghanistan, 
the Kabul Cinema, at Kabul, which is owned by the Government and administered 
by the Afghan Ministry of Education. With a seating capacity of about 700, 
it has been operated regularly since September 1S36. Two performances are 
given daily. Prices of admission are 1, 2, and 3 Afghanis (about lOi, 21, 
and 31i U. S. cents, respectively) for orchestra seats and 5 and 10 Afghanis 
(about $0.53 and $1.06, respectively) for balcony seats. Total box-office 
receipts for a full house would be about 1,200 Afghanis ($127). 

SOUND- 

The only theater wired for sound is the Kabul Cinema, which has German 
equipment. It is understood that the projection room at the Ministry of 
Education used by the censors has "Philips" (Dutch) equipment. 

Since there are no unwired theaters in operation, there would appear 
to be no market in Afghanistan for sound equipment. 

♦ * ♦ 
ALBANIA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws in Albania prohibiting foreign exchange except that 
it is forbidden to export gold bullion and gold coin, and there exist no laws 
giving other countries preference over the United States with regard to films. 
There is no legislation in effect or contemplated which might reduce or prevent 
American distribution of motion pictures. 

CENSORSHIP- 

There is no specific legislation in Albania providing film censorship, 
although every film exhibited must be passed by a commission operating under 
the authority of the Ministry of the Interior. The commission is composed of 
a representative of that Ministry - usually a police officer - and representa- 
tives of the Ministry of Education, the Courts, the Press Bureau of the Foreign 
Office, and the Prefecture. 

Most films of American origin come either directly or by way of Italy, 
where they have been censored and shown. Those coming from Italy are usually 
allowed to be shown without cutting, although they may be previewed by the 



2670 



-9- 



Commission. Films imported from the United States and from other countries 
must pass the Commission with regard to their potential moral and political 
effect on the public. Exhibitors, however, do not consider censorship es- 
pecially strict. 

COMPETITION- 

The following figures show the imports into Albania of motion-picture 
films for the calendar year 1936. These data do not present an accurate 
picture of the countries of origin. It has been ascertained from importers 
and exhibitors that although it appears that the United States and Italy 
supply most of ths films imported, German and French films are respectively 
second and fourth in the number exhibited. The imports from Italy represent 
not only Italian, but also many American, German, and French films that have 
been shown in Italy and reexported to Albania. According to exhibitors 60 
percent of all films imported during 1936 were of American origin, and about 
90 percent of the imports accredited to Italy consisted of American films. 
It is estimated that during 1936 approximately 350 foreign films were imported 
and shown. Of that number more than 200 were from the United States. Tl-e 
countries of origin in the order of number of films imported and shown were: 
United States, Germany, Italy, and France. Very few motion pictures were 
imported from other countries. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There are no copyright laws protecting foreign producers from piracy in 
Albania. 

PRODUCTION- 

No films are produced in Alban a, and there appears to be no prospect for 
the creating of a producing industry. 

There are no facilities for "dubbing" American films in the Albanian 
language. Many American films shown here are "dubbed" in Italian, having been 
previously shown in Italy. Italian is understood by many Albanians. 

TAXES- 

(1) Customs duties. Developed positive moion-picture films are classi- 
fied under Category No. 34 as Item No. 509 (c) (2) in the Albanian Customs 
Tariff, and a duty of 20 gold francs ($6.51) per 100 kilograms is levied. 
There is also collected an additional duty of 18 percent of the total regular 
duty levied, which is destined for municipal, educational , port , and otl'er im- 
provements. Albanian importers do not buy the films they exhibit, but rent 
them, and after they have shown them throughout the country they reexport them. 
However, whether the films are purchased or rented the customs duty is the 
same . 



2670 



-10- 



(2) Municipal taxes. Motion-picture theaters pay an amusement tax of 
from 5 to 40 gold francs daily (except on days when there are no shows), and 
an annual advertisement tax of 300 to 500 gold francs, according to the im- 
portance of the theater. Other municipal taxes are revenue stamps of 0.02^ 
gold francs which are attached to each advertising leaflet. 

(3) Ministry of Finance. An annual tax is paid to the Ministry of 
Finance. This tax is fixed by the Ministry, but it may be contested by the 
owner of the motion-picture house and reduced if he produces good evidence 
that he did not make a big profit on his business. 

THEATERS- 

There are 14 motion-picture theaters in Albania, and all are wired for 
sound films. Nine are owned and operated by the "Kinema Nasional" of Tirana, 
three by the "Gloria" Company, also of Tirana, and the others by two private 
individuals. The two Tirana theaters have a seating capacity of 450 each. 
The two theaters in Scutari and the two in Durazzo each have a capacity of 
320, while the others can seat from 100 to 150 persons. The average admis- 
sion price in Albania is 0.40 franc, Tirana theaters sell tickets for 0.20, 
0.40, 0.60, and 1,00 franc, and those in the other cities charge 0.20, 0.40, 
and 0.50 franc admission. The 0.40-franc seats constitute by far the greatest 
number sold. 

The uneducated class of the native audiences prefer cowboy and criminal 
films, whereas the educated class prefer musical comedies and historical 
dramas . 

The most important motion -picture houses are those in Tirana. Their gross 
incomes are calculated at about 25,000 gold francs each annually. Those in 
the other cities have an estimated gross income of from 3,000 to 10,000 gold 
francs annually. 

It is estimated that the total investment in the Albanian motion-picture 
industry, which consists chiefly of the exhibiting business, amounts to between 
$125,000 and $150,000. That represents the amount of money invested in the 
14 theaters, their equipment, projectors, and fixtures. 

Inasmuch as there is no local production industry, there are no Goverdment 
subsidies. 

SOUND- 

All of the 14 theaters are wired for sound. 



2670 



IMPORTS FROM TH2 UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 8,073 ft. $171 
Nagative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 

• ♦ » 

ARSENTINA 

LEGISLATION- 

Up to the present time there is no legislation which is prejudicial to 
American films, except the exchange-control treatment described below. There 
is a possibility that the Institute Cinematograf ico Argentine (an official 
agency created in 1935 empowered to regulate all phases of the film industry 
in Argentina; will propose some sort of quota or contingent laws in the 
future, favoring the domestic industry. Several measures have been introduced 
into the Buenos Aires City Council, whereby theaters showing national films 
would be allowed rebates on municipal taxes, but so far none of these propo- 
sals has materialized. 

Daring the past year members of the Argentine Association of Motion 
Picture Distributors ( comprisi.ig the principal American companies) were 
charged with violating the monopolistic provisions of the anti-trust law. 
This controversy promises to oe the subject of lengthy litigation in the 
Argentine courts. 

Motion-pi:ture films, sound or silent, pay an import duty of 34.05 paper 
pesos per kilograai, in addition to minor statistical and slingage charges. 
While not in the nature of a tariff charge, the exchange surcharge also 
merits attention. Uiier the Argentine system of exchange control there are 
two rates of exchange at which merchandise may be imported. Goods which are 
granted a "pravijus permit" are eligible to be imported at the favorable 
"official" exchange rate. Goods which do not receive this treatment must be 
finan:;3d at the higher "free market" rate, which is accompanied by a flexible 
surcharge increasing it to a flat 20 percent above the "official" rate. Ar- 
gentina has negotiated trade agreements with the United Kingdom and most other 
European countries, thus allowing most European films to come in at the "of- 
ficial" rate. There is no such trade agreement with the United States, with 
the result that Amarican films have to pay an import differential of 20 per- 
cent extra on the invoice value. _ 



2670 



- -12- 



CENSORSHIP- 

Film censorship is reasonably lenient, with each municipality undertaking 
its own censorship. It is reported that only one film (Mexican) was rejected 
in 1937. 

Censorship in Buenos Aires is in the hands of an honorary commission, 
composed of municipal and Federal Government representatives, together with 
one member representing the production and distribution industry. The other 
important cities have censorship boards formed along similar lines. 

While there are no national censorship standards, films are generally 
approved unless they fall under the following categories: Those stressing 
immorality or bad taste; those which ridicule religion; those which contain 
propaganda insidious to the Government; and those which might lead to inter- 
national complications. 

It is possible that some form of national censorship regulation will be 
formulated by the above-mentioned Institute Cinematograf ico Argentine, under 
authority granted to it by Law No. 11,723 dated September 28, 1933. 

COMPETITION- 

For the past 3 years approximately 70 percent of the total number of 
feature films released in Buenos Aires have been American, On the other hand, 
for these same years 90 percent of the total sound and silent film imports 
(on the basis of weight) have come from the United States. This discrepancy is 
due, of course, to the fact that shorts and news reels are included in the 
latter calculation, and also to the fact that locally-produced films are 
excluded. 

It is difficult to estimate the exact American participation, for the 
foregoing reasons. However, local distributors believe that the so-called 
basic features exhibited in the release houses are 90 percent American. On 
the basis of the number of feature films released, the other competitors would 
probably be the United Kingdom, Argentina, Germany, France, Italy, and Spain, 
in the order named. 

On the basis of box-office receipts, however, it is probable that Ar- 
gentina is the leading competitor to American films. American pictures 
continue to be well received and are definitely preferred in the metropolitan 
first-run houses. However, in the subsequent-run and small-town theaters the 
Argentine films have advanced to a preferred position and are displacing United 
States and other foreign films to a very definite extent. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Inter-American Copyright Convention at Buenos Aires, August 11, 1910; 
ratified July 13, 1934. 



2670 



PRODUCTION- 



Approximately 30 feature films were produced by the local industry in 
1937. with plans for a much larger schedule announced for 1938. Production 
facilities are being expanded, and several of the larger producing companies 
now have fairly adequate equipment. A few of the leading producers appear to 
be operating on a satisfactory financial basis, although many of the smaller 
companies have insufficient capital and depend on outside backing for each 
of their pictures. 

At th'? present time the Government does not subsidize or render assistance 
in fostering the domestic film industry. However, various plans along this 
line have been suggested, and it is probable that the Institute Cinematograf ico 
Argentine 7ill adopt measures to promote national film production. Sr. Sanchez 
Sorondo, the president of the I.istituto, recently visited Europe for the 
purpose of studying the film industry in Italy, Germany, and other countries. 

The technique of the average ^Argentine film is still considerably beloy/ 
American standards, although a few of the recent domestic features have re- 
vealed notable advances. Daspite the shortcomings of the local films, most of 
them show greater earning power than American pictures in the subsequent-run 
theaters and in the rural districts. 

Spanish is the predominant language of the country. At present there are 
no requirements that foreign films must be "dubbed" within the country; future 
plans of the Institute Cinematograf ice Argentine in this connection are not 
yet known. As a matter of fact, the introduction of American "dubbed" films 
in Argentina did not have a lasting success, and at present none of these films 
is exhibited. 

TAXES- 

Import duties on films, and the exchange-control surcharge on American 
and certain other films, are relatively heavy burdens, whereas the taxes on 
theaters and distributors may be considered fairly reasonable. 

Each municipality imposes its own scale of taxes on theaters. In Buenos 
Aires, for instance, taxes are collected on the basis of the registered 
seating capacity in combination with the receipts for each performance. 

The basic tax provides that for each 10 centavos or fraction thereof 
collected for admission, and for each 100 seats or fraction of registered seat- 
ing capacity, there should be paid a tax of 14 centavos. During the summer 
season (November through March) this is reduced to 10 centavos. The foregoing 
scale applies to houses charging admission of more than 1.50 pesos for a "cem- 
pleta" (complete program consisting of several films) or 0.40 peso for a 
"seocion" (one to two pictures). Houses which charge a lower admission 



2670 



-14- 



price pay a basic tax of 11 instead of 14 centavos, with 7 centavos during 
the summer season. Double the established tax is charged for continuous 
performances. Except in special cases, all performances must be finished by 
12:30 A. M. (with a slight tolerance), otherwise a fine of 100 pesos is im- 
posed. Failure to pay taxes within a specified limit incurs a 20 percent 
penalty . 

Distributors pay the same taxes as other commercial organizations. The 
principal assessments in this connection are the income and sales taxes. 
Income tax ranges from 5 to 9 percent on profits. Distributors are not 
assessed the sales tax on the films which they lease, but only on the sale 
of accessories such as posters, photographs, and the like. 

THEATERS- 

According to the 1937 Argentine film guide "El Indicador", there are 
1,021 motion-picture theaters in the Republic, with a total seating capacity 
of 548,875. Of these, 178 houses seating a total of 131,084 are in the Federal 
Capital. Of the 1,021 houses in the whole country, it is believed that between 
800 and 900 may be considered as "activo", the remainder being either closed or 
else operating intermittently. 

The average admission price generally charged by a first-run house is 2 
pesos, with a few of them charging 2.50 and 3 pesos. The popular-priced 
theaters have admission prices ranging from 0.40 to 1 peso. Most Argentine 
theaters offer at least two feature pictures, and sometimes more, on the same 
program. 

The Argentine audiences, except those which attend the metropolitan first- 
run houses, seem to prefer national productions. Speaking ^ilms in general, 
adventure and romance pictures appear to be the types best liked, with musi- 
cals declining in popularity. While the Argentine "fan" has demonstrated a 
strong liking for national pictures, this is not altogether due to the fact 
that they are in Spanish, but rather that they have a local background and 
utilize the Argentine dialect. As a matter of fact, Spanish-dialogue films 
from Mexico and Spain have not been particularly successful in Argentina. 

No accurate data are available on the yearly gross income of theaters, and 
local distributors say that such an estimate would be difficult to compile. 

SOUND- 

Practically all of the 1,021 theaters referred to above are wired for 
sound. The prospects for selling sound equipment to the unwired theaters are 
not attractive. A sizeable portion of the sound theaters have mediocre equip- 
ment, most of which was assembled locally. There is a possibility that these 
theaters will be potential buyers of better equipment in the future, although 



2670 



-15- 



the question of price will still be the dominating sales point. American sound 
equipment in particular finds difficulty in competing, for the reason that 
its higher basic price is further exaggerated by unfavorable exchange treat- 
ment, described elsewhere in this report, 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



17.213,406 ft. 
86,205 ft. 



$337,638 
$1,355 



1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



18,036,629 ft. 
48,889 ft. 



$323,274 
$714 



AUSTRALIA 



LEGISLATION- 



There is no law in Australia which prohibits foreign exchange, but under 
the tariff law British films enter Australia duty-free, while all other films 
are subject to high tariff rates. 

The only other important laws affecting films specifically are the quota 
laws in the State of New South Wales and Victoria only. 

On December 16, 1937, the Premier of New South Wales introduced into 
the Legislative Assembly a bill, which was subsequently passed by both the 
Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council, known as the "Theaters, Public 
Halls, and Cinematograph Films Act, 1937", which amends the "Theaters and 
Public Halls Act, 1908" and "Cinematograph Films (Australian Quota) Act, 1935". 

The chief features of the new bill are: 

(1) Th3 quota requirement for distributors is reduced to 3 percent 
for 1933 and 3 perc3nl for 1939, the percentages for years after that date 
to be dstarmined later. The ambiguity in the old law, caused by the use of 
the word "acquire", has been removed, it being clearly stated in the new bill 
that ths di5tri'.:utcr3 must produce pictures in Australia if that is necessary 
in ordsr for thorn to obtain the required number of quota pictures; 



(2) If - c'.ictribator acquiras a.i Australian "quota" film for exhibition 
in Australi:! and Na.v Zealand, and in addition pays the producer a sum not 
1~S3 than £10, COO for tho right to exhibit the film elsewhere than Australia 
an:! N;7.- Zcalir.d, t".".3 distri-utor is credited with having acquired two quota 
films; 



2670 



-16- 



(3) No additional theater buildings will be authorized during 1938 
without the approval of a committee which is to be set up; 

(4) Exhibitors are given the right to reject 12j percent of all non- 
British pictures contracted for, and the right to reject a further 3 percent 
in order to make room on their schedules for quota pictures. 

The new Bill provides that distributors will be exempt from liability for 
their failure to comply with the old quota law — provided that, on or before 
March 31, 193S, they satisfy the Film Advisory Committee that they will comply 
with the amended act which becomes effective on January 1, 1938. 

On December 15, 1937, the House of Assembly in Tasmania passed a bill 
which would give the Government of that State power to restrict theater 
construction by refusing licenses, and which would give exhibitors the right 
to reject 25 percent of all films contracted for. The bill was sponsored hy 
the Premier of Tasmania and was expected to be passed immediately thereafter 
by the Upper House (Legislative Council). However, the bill was unexpectedly 
help up and has not yet been passed by the Upper House. It remains to be 
seen whether the bill will actually become law. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Commonwealth Film Censorship dealt with 453 imported feature films 
during 1936 (the latest period for which figures are available). Of this 
total, 340 were passed without eliminations, 95 were passed with eliminations, 
and 18 were rejected in first instance. Of these 18 rejections, 10 were 
subsequently passed on appeal or reconstructed, 4 were rejected on appeal, 
while there was no appeal in the case of the remaining 4. Of the 8 feature 
films finally rejected, 5 were American and 3 British, representing 1.4 percent 
and 2.9 percent respectively of the total number of American and British 
feature films imported. The films were rejected because they were (1) "blas- 
phemous, indecent or obscure", or (2) "likely to be injurious to morality, 
or to encourage or incite crime", or (1) "depicting any matter the exhibition 
of which is undesirable in the public interest". The Chief Film Censor, in his 
annual report, commented on the recent improvement in imported films, from 
the standpoint of both censorship standards and entertainment value. The 
censorship is generally regarded as very strict. 

COMPETITION- 

As only 6 feature films were made in Australia during 1937 the chief 
competition for American films is that encountered from British productions. 
Of the 453 feature films imported in 1936, the United States supplied 348 
(76.8 pescent), the United Kingdom 103 (22.7 percent), and other countries 
2.5 percent). The share of the United States was 73.4 percent in 1935 and 
72.48 percent in 1934. American films are regarded favorably and, generally 
speaking, are preferred to other films. 



2670 



-17- 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The laws of Australia give full protection to copyrights, and there is 
virtually no trouble with "piracy" of films. 

PRODUCTION- 

Only 6 feature films were produced in Australia during 193/. Of this 
total, 4 were made by Cinesound Productions, Ltd., 1 by Commonwealth Film 
Laboratories, and 1 by New World Films, Ltd. National Productions, Ltd., has 
not produced any pictures during 193.'. While the producers now active appear 
to have sufficient resources for their present scale of operations, it is 
reported that lack of finance has kept some producers inactive. The technique 
of Australian producers is said to have improved during the past 2 or 3 years, 
but is still regarded as somewhat below American standards. As English is the 
only language of Australia, the question of "dubbed" films does not arise. 

TAXE5- 

Aside from the Federal and State income taxes paid by all companies, 
which are regarded as high, importers, distributors, and exhibitors pay 
further taxes in the form of import duty and tax on theater tickets. Feature 
films from the United Kingdom are duty-free, but those of other origin are 
dutiable at 8 pence (about $0.16) per foot. Because of this duty, only 
negatives are imported from the United States, and copies are made in Austral- 
ia. There is no tax on theater tickets in Queensland, but each of the other 

5 States has such a tax. In New South Wales (the most important State) the 
tax ranges from i pence ($0.01) on tickets from 1 shilling 6i pence ($0.30) 
to 1 shilling 11^ pence ($0.39), to 5 pence, ($0.10) on tickets priced at 

6 shillings ($1.25). The tax is higher in other States. 

THEATERS- 

In October, 1937, there were 1,541 motion-picture theaters (including 
57 touring shows) in Australia, with a total seating capacity of 1,097,000. 
The average admission prices for first-run theaters (evenings) are from 1 
shilling 6 pence to 5 shillings 10 pence ($0.30 to $1.16); for other theaters, 
from 1 shilling to 2 shillings 6 pence ($0.20 to $0.50). American and Austral- 
ian tastes are very similar with regard to pictures. The musical comedy is 
among the most popular. There is no official figure or trade estimate of the 
gross income of theaters. 

SOUND- 

■ - All 1,541 motion-picture theaters in Australia are wired for sound. 



26V0 



-18- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES - 



1937 - Positive Sound 
Negative sound 



4,632,378 ft 
1,099,799 ft 



$116,783 
$32,451 



1936 



Positive sound 



4,777.668 ft 
1.107,332 ft 



$107,263 
$25,688 



Negative sound 



» « ♦ 



AUSTRIA 



LEGISLATION- 

During 1937. the system of granting "Vormerkscheine" to pay for presenta- 
tion permits issued by the provincial authorities continued in force with 
regard to sound feature films and sound short films. On January 30, 1937, 
however, new film regulations were issued. On the whole, the wording of 
these is practically the same as that of the old ones, but the few alterations 
made are of great importance. To stimulate domestic production, the supplier 
of a sound film apparatus used in the production of a domestic feature film 
which has been approved by the competent authorities received 4 additional 
"Vormerkscheine" which are transferable and form the basis for the issuance of 
exhibition permits. The exhibition permits issued for a film are valid as a 
rule for all copies. If a feature film is exhibited in several installments, 
each part of such film is regarded as a whole film. A maximum of 12 Vormerk- 
scheine will be issued for each domestic feature sound film, 1.5 Vormerk- 
scheine each for domestic short films, and 3 Vormerkscheine each for cultural 
short films for compulsory exhibition. 

Vormerkscheine are not required for domestic sound films of all kinds, 
for imported bits used in Austrian news reels, or for "trailers" or advance 
sample of coming features. Domestic advertisement films must comply with 
the special regulations covering the showing of such film. 

If the producer of an Austrian feature film sells such a film in foreign 
customs territory at a fair price, or if such a film is duly shown abroad, 
the Film Bureau is authorized to issue as an export premium additional Vor- 
merkscheine as authorized for that purpose by the Ministry of Commerce. These 
Vormerkscheine remain at the disposal of the Film Bureau and may be used only 
for the exhibition of films from the same foreign customs territory. This 
authorization may be granted only once for each feature film. 

The granting of Vormerkscheine is restricted by the limitation that the 
film must be shown to the Film Council before it is exhibited in public. 



2670 



--19- 



Vormerkscheine are handled by the Film Bureau of the Vienna Chamber of 
Commerce. The price of one Vormekscheine is 1,000 schillings. For the time 
being, the allotment of Vormerkscheine and the charging of fees are on a 100 
percent basis. 

The importation and exhibition of sound feature films continues to be 
subject to contingent control. In accordance with the new regulations, the 
film contingent fee was increased by 25 percent, effective February 7, 1937. 
The number of Vormekscheine required for the issuance of an exhibition permit 
for a foreign short sound film less than 350 meters long is now 0.15, and for 
such a film from 350 to 700 meters long, 0.30 Vormerkscheine. Foreign adver- 
tisement short films (except trailers) pay three times the above number 
of Vormerkscheine. 

For the issu'^nce of an exhibition permit for other foreign sound films 
the following number of Vormerkscheine are required: 

Above 1,500 meters 4.5 

1,000 to 1,500 " 3. 

700 to 1,000 " 2. 

In issuing an exhibition permit for a foreign feature film above 1,500 
meters which requires the insertion of German texts and titles, a reduction 
can be granted to 1.5 Vermerkscheine if shown in one copy, and to 2.25 Vor- 
merkscheine if shown in two copies.* In each case application must be made 
by the Film Bureau to the Ministry of Commerce; these applications are usually 
granted if the petitioning distributors have titling and subtitling done 
in Austria on at least one-third of the number of foreign-language copies 
distributed by them. 

Distributors who are able to prove a certain expenditure in Austria for 
the dubbing of a feature film receive a maximnm of 8 Vormerkscheine. Further- 
more, the exhibition of such films in Austria will be granted free. The same 
applies to the original foreign-language version of such film. 

The Government does not subsidize the domestic film industry but is fos- 
tering it by contingent control and by granting "Vormerkscheine" for domes- 
tically produced films, which Vormerkscheine are paid for from contingent 
receipts. The dubbing in Austria of foreign-language films is also promoted by 
the granting of additional Vormerkscheine, as stated above. 

Fees for exhibition permits for films of all kinds produced in countries 
which handicap the distribution of Austrian films by import prohibition 
regulations concerning payment, scenarios, cast personnel, etc., can be 
increased above the normal rate. Reduction of fees in accordance with seasonal 
box-office fluctuations will not be granted. 



No reduction for three or more copies from the base price of 4.5 Vor- 
merkscheine. 



-20- 



Filra distributors are asked by the Film Bureau of the Vienna Chamber 
of Commerce to rent certain Austrian propaganda or "cultural" shorts which 
are designated for obligatory exhibition; if they refuse or do not pay for 
such films, exhibition permits for all other films handled by that distributor 
may be cancelled or withdrawn. 

The above regulations also apply to substandard sound films. 

The Austrian film industry depends to the extent of 70 to 80 percent on 
the German market. The Austro-German film agreement, valid until June 30, 
1939, has undergone a revision, and it is understood that according to the new 
stipulations, Germany will take 14 Austrian feature films a year, while 
Austria grants the contingent- free importation of an unlimited number of 
German-language feature films produced in Germany. The exchange of short 
sound films and cultural shorts has been fixed at the ratio of 10:1 in favor 
of Germany. 

The chief reason for Austria submitting to the contingent-free importation 
of German feature films was her desire to reduce to some extent the large 
amount of Austrian claims frozen in Germany. 

Tha contemplated centralization in Vienna of film censorship on a uniform 
basis for the entire country has not gone through, and censorship continues to 
be effected by the various provincial authorities for their respective provin- 
ces. The whole question of censorship in Austria is therefore in a rather 
unsettled condition. Censorship in Austria, however, is not rigid and, except 
for gangster films, which are considered undesirable, is no practical obstacle 
to the importation of foreign films. 

COMPETITION- 

In line with the general decrease in the number of films exhibited, which 
during the 10-months period January to October 1937 totaled 261 feature films 
against 278 in the previous year, there were also fewer American films shown. 
Estimated on a basis of the number of films shown, the position of the United 
States, expressed in percentage of the entire number exhibited, was 38 percent 
or the same as that of Germany, each of the two countries supplying 99 feature 
films. Of the remainder only 3.8 percent were domestically produced films, the 
others originating in England, France, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and a few other 
countries. American films are very well liked in Austria and shown in good 
volume, especially in the large first-run houses in Vienna, while German films, 
although not greater in number, exhibit many more copies throughout the coun- 
try. Competition from other countries and from domestic production is un- 
important. 



2670 



-21- 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Established by governmental decree No. Ill of April 9, 1936. 
PRODUCTION- 

The Austrian film industry is experiencing a severe crisis, and local 
producers state that more cash is needed to enable them to keep up their 
production. Also, in view of the high cost of bank financing, studio and sound 
apparatus, rentals, star's salaries, etc., costs have reached the point where 
it is no longer profitable to produce films in Austria without some form of 
Government subsidy. This, however, has failed to be forthcoming. Receipts 
from other countries have also declined in consequence of exchange and other 
restrictions on Austrian films. Production, therefore, fell off considerably 
and during the first 9 months of 1937 amounted to only 10 feature sound films 
and 10 short sound films, chiefly of an educational or cultural nature. This 
compares to 19 feature sound films and 10 short sound films for the same period 
of 1936. The Austrian film technique is very well developed and comparable 
with American films. American films, or for that matter any foreign-language 
films, dubbed in Austria are not very well received by the public, since the 
dubbing is considered to be poorly done. The native German language is the 
predominant one in Austria, but a large number of the people, especially in 
Vienna, read and speak English fairly well. There is no law prescribing 
that the dubbing of foreign films must be done in Austria, but premiums in the 
form of additional Vormerkscheine are granted to distributors who have their 
dubbing done in that country. 

TAXES- 

The tariff on sound films is 120 gold crowns ($40.70 at current rate) per 
100 kilograms, plus 4 percent of duty-paid c.i.f. invoice value. 

Other taxes consist of (1) the local censors' fee amounting to 50 schil- 
lings ($9.25) per 1,000 meters but not more than 100 schillings per film, 
and an additional fee of 3 groschen per meter for Federal approval. (2) 
Amusement (Lustbarkeits) tax of 4 to 20 percent of gross receipts. This tax, 
however, is payable only in the city of Vienna, while in Lower Austria and 
Carinthia it has been entirely eliminated and in the six other provinces it 
is reduced. (3) Effective April 1, 1937. a box-office tax of 2 groschen per 
ticket is collected for the assistance and support of poor musicians (Musik- 
schutzabgabe) . (4) Aside from the foregoing, distributors and theater owners 
pay the usual taxes on earning and personal income, also various Federal and 
municipal welfare taxes such as unemployment fund, insurance of employees 
against illness or accident, pension fund, etc., and the turnover tax. 



2670 



THEATERS- 



Estimated total 779, with a seating capacity of 234,580. The average 
admission price is about 1 schilling (18.5 cents) in Vienna and about 0.80 
schillings (15 cents) in the provinces. There is wide variety with regard 
to the types of films best liked by the Austrian audience. The greatest 
attraction is a film having an outstanding star in the cast. Good comedies and 
dancing shows are very much favored, and "G-men" films as well. No figures 
or estimates are available regarding the gross receipts of cinemas for 1937, 
but in 1936 they were estimated at 50,000,000 schillings. 

SOUND- 

Of the estimated total number of cinemas in Austria, 706 or 90 percent 
are wired for sound. The remaining 10 percent are so small and their financial 
conditions so poor that they cannot afford to buy the necessary equipment for 
the exhibition of sound films. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound ' ' 1,452,730 ft, $35,792 
Negative sound 41,065 ft. $2,413 

1936 - Positive sound 1,861,635 ft. $38,736 

Negative sound 19,174 ft. $1,917 



BAHAMAS 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no agitation or legislation against the exhibition of American 
motion pictures. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Commandant of Police has charge of the censorship of motion-picture 
films. No gangster films are permitted to be shown. It is understood that 
during the year 1936 no films were censored by the above-mentioned authority, 
but that one or two mob films were refused by the manager of one of the 
theaters. 

The Cinematograph Act of 1912 (Bahamas Laws, Chapter 112) forbids the 
presentation or exhibition by means of a cinematograph or other similar 
apparatus, of "any picture, drawing, print, film or representation of any 
kind, of a treasonable, seditious, profane, blasuhemous, immoral, indecent 
or obscene character". 



2670 



-23^ 



COMPETITION- 

Great Britain so far has, been the only competitor of American films 
in this Colony. However, during the year 1936, according to the Bahamas cus- 
toms statistics, only American filuis were imported into the Colony for exhibi- 
tion. The value of films imported during the year ended December 31, 1936, was 
£4,887, equivalent to $24,435. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright relations are the same as in the United Kingdom. 

PRODUCTION- 

... There is no production of motion pictures in the Bahamas. AH films 
shown here are in the English language. .-^^ 

TAXES- ..... . .. 

A customs duty of 1^ percent ad valorem is assessed on motion-picture 
films imported into the Colony^ provided satisfactory bond be given for the 
reexportation thereof within 90 days,. .. . 

There are no amusement taxes. 



THEATERS- 

:..-. T At tl\e present time there are only three motion-picture theaters in 
the Bahamas, two halving been destroyed by, fire recently. 

Total seating capacity at the Savoy Theater, which is now the only 
motion-picture theater in Nassau frequented by the white population, is 
328. The average price of admission at the Savoy is approximately , 35 cent§^ 

Two other motion-picture houses, which cater solely to the colored 
population, have a total aggregate seating capacity of 850. Average price 
of admission is approximately 25 cents. 

Types of films shown are comparable to American standards. Programs 
consist of feature, comedy, news reel, and short subjects, approximating 
proi^rams in the better class motion-picture theaters in the United States. 

SOUND- 

All three theaters are wired for sound. 



2670 



-24- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES (to "other British West Indies" )- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



10.169,863 ft. 
7,328 ft. 



$24,762 
$153 



1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



7,158,685 ft. 
2,843 ft. 



$25,745 
$57 



« » « 



BARBADOS 



LEGISLATION- 

On January 1, 1936, there was put into effect a compulsory British 
exhibition quota of 20 percent on features and 50 percent on news reels, 
the former increasing in the second year to 25 percent. This act has not 
been enforced, as no such amount of British films is available in this market. 
The exhibitors have informed the Colonial Secretary to this effect, so it is 
hoped that this act may be abolished, in view of the fact that this island is 
near the United States and, in connection with the other islands of this re- 
gion, can use a certain amount of American films which are preferred by the 
local audiences. 

A bill has been proposed to establish a definite board of censorship. 

At the present time there is a committee under the Deputy Commissioner 
of Police which censors films that are to be exhibited in Barbados. This 
existing censorship is not very strict, and it is understood that only three or 
four films were so badly cut or rejected during the past year that they could 
not be exhibited. 

COMPETITION- 

Of all the films shown, 95 percent are of American make. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Same as United Kingdom. 
PRODUCTION- 

There is no production of motion pictures in Barbados. 



There is no admission tax. A parochial trade tax of 8.5 percent on net 
profits and a colonial income tax on net profits amounting to 2 shillings 6 



TAXES- 



2670 



-25- 



pence on the pound are levied. These taxes may vary slightly from year to year, 
being fixed by the appropriate bodies. 

THEATERS- 

There are at present three theaters in Barbados, all of which are wired 
for sound. The combined seating' capacity of these theaters is 1,987. The 
average range of motion-picture admission prices is from 12 to 48 cents for 
first-run picture theaters and from 6 to 24 cents in the second-run houses. 
The average motion-picture program consists of a short news reel, comedy, 
and a feature. One theater, however, shows double feature programs on week 
ends. Two theaters change programs three times a week, while the third theater 
changes its programs twice a week. The favorite types of film are those of a 
musical comedy nature. Next in importance are heavy dramas and comedies. 

Attendance at motion-picture theaters has greatly dropped off during 
the summer season of 1937, by reason of the local riots at the end of July. 
Exhibitors fear that the public is losing the habit of attending the three 
local theaters as heretofore, because the former regular patrons no longer 
frequent them. It is estimated by one exhibitor that his receipts have 
dropped off more than 70 percent, but he hopes to rectify this by bringing 
to Barbados in quick succession several excellent films to attract his patrons 
and again get them in the habit of attending the theater at frequent regular 
intervals. It is said that the theaters are now full only one or two nights 
per week and that during the other nights the receipts from admissions may 
not even cover the operating expenses. 

SOUND- 

The three theaters are wired for sound. 

* » * 

BELGIUM 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws prohibiting foreign exchange. Money made in Belgium 
may be freely transferred. Certain American companies have been able by the 
form of their organization and the presentation of appropriate accounts to 
avoid local fiscal levies on large sums which have been shifted to America. 

Local laws do not give preference to other countries over American films. 
There are no quota or contingent laws in effect, nor are any such laws con- 
templated. Legislation which might reduce or prevent American distribution 
of motion pictures is not at present foreseen. It is probable that Belgium 
will continue to be considered a favored field by American distriutors. 



2670 



-26- 



The disadvantages presaged during 1935 and 1936 were eased somewhat 
during 1937 by the gradual subsiding of the organized agitation for the 
local synchror ization of American films susceptible to "dubbing". Relations 
between Belgian distributors of American films and the producers were strength- 
ened during the year by the personal visits of several important American film 
executives to Belgium to gain first-hand knowledge of the problems faced by 
their agents. The numerous conferences resulting from these visits presage a 
period of increased activity for the local market. 

CENSORSHIP- 

There is no compulsory censorship in Belgium, When pictures are re- 
leased, the distributor is not obliged by the law to submit his films to any 
institution for censoring. 

If children under 16 years of age are to be admitted to see a film, 
the film must be passed upon by a so-called "Commission de Controle" which 
decides whether the picture can be played before children under 16. This is 
not an obligatory measure, if the distributor proposes to exhibit his film to 
an audience of mature age. 

In some films, such as these based on Wild West sequences, the activity 
of the "Commission de Controle" has developed into a very definite censorship, 
since such films are made to appeal largely to juvenile minds. 

The "Commission de Controle" is very strict in its censorship of films 
voluntarily submitted in order to obtain the "Children Admitted" privilege. 
Its standards are high. In order to be played before children, a picture must 
not contain any scenes of robbery, fighting, gun-play, gambling, kidnaping, 
extortion, cruelty, or intimidation. Lascivious scenes, stories portraying 
adultery, or films based on blackmailing are also unable to obtain the approval 
of the Commission of Control to display the sign "Children Admitted". Certain 
Wild West pictures under such regulations have suffered severe cuts. 

In general, it may be stated, on the authority of the trade, that no 
films were absolutely rejected by the censorship for adult showing in Brussels. 

COMPETITION- 

For sound films it is necessary to divide Belgium into three territories: 
Brussels, which is considered definitely bi-lingual; the Flemish territory, 
where the language of the Flemings predominates; and the Walloon territory, 
where the French language predominates. In Brussels and the French-speaking 
section of Belgium, the largest competitors of the American films are the 
French productions originating in France. In the Flemish section of the 
country there is no important competitor of American films, although German 
films are produced in this territory and receive a favorable reception. 



2670 



-27- 



Fifty percent of the films shown in Brussels are American, although 
this does not mean that they are necessarily produced in English, since many 
of them have been "dubbed" in the French studios of American concerns. In 
the French-speaking territory of Belgium, approximately ^0 percent of the 
films shown are American. This percentage is doubled in the Flemish territory, 
where fully SO percent of the films shown are American. 

American films are well received throughout Belgium. The preference of 
Brussels, according to the trade, is for French productions, although numerous 
American films have enjoyed long runs and would seem to share the honors 
equally with the French. In the French-speaking territories of Belgium, the 
French films are preferred. In the Flemish territory American films are the 
most favored. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Belgian lav.s protect copyrig'.ts and protect foreign producers from piracy. 
Belgian legislation in this respect enforces international agreements. Es- 
tablished by Presidential Proclamation on July 1, 1891; extended April 9, 
1910, and July 14, 1911. 

FRCDUCTIOr- 

There were six domestic films produced in 1937. 

Production facilities are not adequate, and the indus+ry is not only 
poorly financed but precarious, film producers leading what amounts to a hand- 
to-mouth existence. The technique of the local men is not comparable with that 
shown in American films. 

The on]y objection to American films "dubbed" in the native language 
comes from those spectators who would prefer to see the American films in 
English. It may be presumed that this group forms a substantial minority. 
For purposes of film distribution, French remains the predominant language of 
the country. 

As already indicated, foreign films need not be "dubbed" in the country 
in which they are shown, although for a certain period there was much agitation 
among certain groups of Belgian syndicates to make such "dubbing" obligatory. 

Because of the very precarious and constantly changing organization of 
the local motion-picture industry, it is impossible to state with precision 
what the total investment is. 

The Government does not subsidize the domestic motion-picture industry 
or render it other assistance for the fostering of its growth. Documentary 
films are sponsored by semiofficial touring agencies, yet the expenditure 



2670 



-28- 



is slight. The prospects for continued good business are excellent. After 
a period of rising prosperity, the Belgian economic and financial situation 
is slightly uncertain as the year 1937 closes and exhibitors are again cautious 
and unwilling to engage themselves fo:- a long period. Nonetheless, because of 
its comparative absence from restrictions, the Belgian market remains a favor- 
able and highly interesting field for the distribution of American films. 



TAXES- 



As already indicated, taxation is, comparitively, not high. Taxes are 
imposed upon theaters, distributors, and imports. 



These taxes are as follows: 



(a) Theater tax on admission price, based on price of seat. 



Price of Seat 



Up to Frs. 4, - 

From " 4,01 to 5 

" " 5.01 to 8 

" 8.01 to 12 

" 12.01 up 



Percentage of price 
taken as tax. 

5.40 percent 

8.10 
14.50 
18.60 
23,25 



(b) Distributors: There is a tax of 2.475 percent on the net amount 
paid to the producer as "rcyalty". Certain American distributors, however, 
object that under the present legislation this tax of 2.475 percent on "royal- 
ties" is not applicable to the motion-pictue industry, and these represen- 
tatives exact the reimbursement of the amounts paid to the "fisc". 



(c) Imports: Besides the regular customs duties due upon the entrance 
of most merchandise into Belgium, all films imported into Belgium are sub- 
jected, like all other merchandise, to the "taxe de transmission" of 2.5 per- 
cent ad valorem. 



THEATERS- 



There has been much activity in Ihe refitting of houses and the opening 
of new ones during the year. Local estimates of the trade place the number 
of theaters in the country at nearly 1,000. This is a considerable advance 
over the figure heretofore given, "approximately 800". 

The total seating capacity of these theaters amounts to abcut 600,000 
seats . 



2670 



-29- 



The average admission price in the big theaters is 7 francs, although 
there are more luxurious establishments in Brussels where the average is 
somewhat higher. For theaters giving the lilms in second or in subsequent 
runs the average admission price is 3.50 francs. 

The native audiences prefer comedies, and it is the gayer type of film 
that is the best liked. 

The yearly gross income at the theaters is stated by the trade, to be 
approximately 250.000,000 francs, yet fiscal statistics for 1936 claim that 
cinema receipts totaled 305,800,000 francs. 

SOUND- 

The wiring of Belgian theaters for sound is continuing, and it is esti- 
mated that approximately 800 now possess installations for the showing of 
sound films. The prospects of selling sound equipment to those theaters which 
are still unwired are good. Approximately 100 theaters may be considered 
as prospective customers. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 2,647,043 ft. $63,519 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 2,670,834 ft. $50,816 

Negative sound 1,728 ft. $107 

« * # 

BERMUDA 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no legislation in Bermuda detrimental to American films. 
CENSORSHIP- 

There are few censorship regulations in the colony, and such regulations 
as exist are purely voluntary between the manager of the theater company and 
the Board of Education. The manager of the company who goes to New York per- 
sonally to select the films to be used for the year is thoroughly familiar 
with local tastes and feelings in such matters and is therefore careful in the 
selection of all films. If there is any feeling on the part of the management 
that the picture might be objectionable, members of the Board of Education and 
clergy are invited to see the picture at a private showing. No pictures were 
rejected during the past year. 



2670 



-30- 



COMPETITION- 

Practically all films shown in Bermuda are American. There is but little 
competition, and this from England. Approximately 180 films will be shown 
during the year 1937, probably 15 of the number being British. Only outstand- 
ing British films are projected. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The copyright laws of Bermuda protect foreign producers from piracy.. 

PRODUCTION- 

No films are produced in Bermuda. Parts of American pictures have been 
made here on several occasions, but there are no studios in the colony. 

taxes- 
No amusement taxes are levied in the colony by the Bermuda government; 
motion-picture films, excluding undeveloped films of British origin, are 
subject to an import duty of 1 penny (approximately 2 cents) per 100 feet. 
Films not of British origin are subject to an import duty of 6 pence (approxi- 
mately 12 cents) per 100 feet, plus a surtax of 25 percent. 

THEATERS- 

There are nine theaters in the colony, with a total seating capacity of 
2,716. There are but two important houses, and they are situated in Hamilton. 
Both theaters have recently been remodeled and enlarged and now have a combined 
seating capacity of approximately 1,200. Shows are given nightly in these 
places with the exception of Sundays. There are frequent matinees during the 
winter months. 

Other houses are in operation at St. George's, where three shows are given 
weekly; at Somerset, with three shows weekly; and at Baileys Bay, Prospect, 
The Flats, Southampton, and the Dockyard, where weekly shows are given. 

The average admission price for evening shows is 50 cents, for special 
features 75 cents, and for matinees from 12 to 25 cents. 

Musical comedies are perhaps the most popular type of film shown in 
Bermuda, yet the management of the theater company is careful to select a 
well-balanced program throughout the year. 

SOUND- 

All theaters in the colony are now wired for sound. Aside from expected 
replacements there is no market for sound equipment in Bermuda. 



2670 



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lUPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 1.520,184 ft. $30,067 
Negative sound — 

1936 - Positive sound 1,842,156 ft. $37,079 
Negative sound — 

« # » 
BOLIVIA 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no definite legislation imposed against motion pictures. The 
only restriction is that of transmitting funds abroad. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Government decree of February 22, 1926. forbids admittance of children 
under 12 years to picture houses on week days. Censorship is executed by the 
various municipalities from moral, religious, and political standpoints, but 
it is not strict.. 

COMPETITION- 

During the past year approximately 90 percent of the films shown were 
cf American manufacture, while 10 percent were European. It is believed that 
there will be some increase in the percentage of European films shown during 
the next year, because of the fact that a number of contracts have already been 
signed with European distributors. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There are no copyright relations with the United States. 

PRODUCTION- 

No films were produced during 1937. There are no studios in Bolivia. 
TAXES- 

In Bolivia there are the following national taxes collected in all 
parts cf the country: 10 percent of gross receipts; stamp tax of from Bs. 
0.C2 to 5s, 2.50 per ticket according to price. The Government sales tax on 
ticketc ic now Bs . C.Ol to Es. 0.50, depending on the price of the tickets, 
which runs from Bs. 0.20 to Es. 25.00. There is a municipal tax of 4 percent 



2670 



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and a departmental tax of 5 percent on the value of the tickets, subject to 
surcharges of 7| percent and 20 percent respectively. In La Paz there is a 
4 percent municipal tax, a municipal tax on outdoor advertisements, an annual 
municipal license tax of Bs. 2,000 for first-class theaters and Bs. 1,000 
for second-class theaters. In the other principal cities of the country, 
there are, in addition to national taxes, departmental taxes of from 6 to 10 
percent of gross receipts and annual municipal license taxes of from Bs. 
1,000 to Bs. 1,500. 



There are 19 theaters in Bolivia. Three in La Paz, two in Sucre, one 
in Cochabambo, and one in Oruro may be considered relatively important. 

Admission prices range between Bs. 2.50 and Bs. 3.00. Very rarely 
prices reach Bs. 4.00 for outstanding films. Sometimes prices are reduced to 
Bs. 1.00 for films that have been already shown several times. The usual 
program consists of a news reel, a comedy, and a feature picture. Theaters in 
La Paz offer one new film weekly, which is generally exhibited about three 
times during the week. All other exhibitions during the week are films that 
have been previously shown. Films preferred by the natives are musical come- 
dies, sensationals. and thrillers. There is no special preference as to na- 
tionality of stars; films in the Spanish language would probably be preferred, 
but exhibitions of pictures in this language are very few. English-language 
films enjoy a great preference over European-language films that have been 
shown. 

SOUND- 

There are 19 theaters wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



THEATERS- 



1937 



Positive sound 



104.475 ft 



$2,333 



Negative sound 



1936 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



81,299 ft 
944 ft 



$1,163 
$57 



♦ » ♦ 



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BRAZIL 

LEGISLATION- 

On Dacember 24, 1937, Brazil enacted a new Exchange Law which is as 
follows : 

Article I. - Export bills or values received from other countries may be 
sold only to the Bank of Brazil. 

Article IJ. - The export bills referred to in article No. I will be 
distributed by the Bank of Brazil i.i accordance ivith the provisions of this 
decree law. 

1. Daily after having attended to the necessities of the public adminis- 
tration the remaining coverage will be distributed in accordance with the 
following order of preference: 

(1) Importation of merchandise and export freight charges; (2) expenses 
of publi3-utility companies; (3) dividends and profits in general; and (4) 
other remittances. 

2. The purchasers of the bills mentioned in paragraph No. 1, with the ex- 
ception of those for public administration, will pay in national currency 
a tax of 3 percent of the value of the purchase. 

3. Duly authorized operations between banks are exempt from this tax. 

Arti cle III . - The Bank of Brazil will distribute exchange to the banks 
by means of delivery of the respective bill or drafts substituting them and 
by simple exchange of correspondence. The acts in connection with this dis- 
tribution are not subject to stamp tax nor intervention of a broker. 

Articl e IV. - The contracts of purchase and sale of export bills may be 
made up to a maximum period of 6 months. Contracts which are not liquidated 
within that period by the actual delivery of export bills will be subject to 
payment of new stamps equivalent to double of that previously paid. 

Article V. - The Bank of Brazil may, with the authorization of the Minis- 
ter of Finance, renounce, when it judges convenient, partially or totally the 
exclusive purchase of exchange granted to it by the present decree law. 

AEticle VI. - The proceeds of the 3 percent tax mentioned in paragraph 
No. 2 of article II and the profits resulting from operations in connection 
with monopoly of exchange will be credited to the account of the National 
Tfeasury for the formation of an exchange find, the application of which 
the Government will opportunely resolve. 



26 0 



-34^ - 



Art icle VII. - Those infringing the above disposition will be punished by 
a fine which the Minister of Finance will fix between the maximum limit of 
double the value of the transaction and the minimum of 5 centos of reis. 

Article VIII . - This decree law will enter into effect upon the date of 
its publication. 

Article IX. - All dispositions to the contrary are revoked. 

The law requiring exhibitors to s'low a minimum of 100 meters (328 feet) 
of domestic film with each program continued to sustain the 30-odd producers 
of news reels and short subjects. The action of the Federal Government in 
offering an annual cash premium for the best picture of this type produced 
has done much to improve the quality of domestic shorts. Despite this, how- 
ever, the majority of these are technically poor, and audiences continue to 
regard them as a "ncessary evil". 

CENSORSHIP- 

Brazilian censorship laws are regarded as reasonable, and their applica- 
tion appears to be uniformly fair throughout the ertire country. Decree No. 
21240 of April 4, 1932, sets forth justifiable reasons for the whole or 
partial rejection of a picture by the Board of Censors: (1) Offensive to 
public decency; (2) suggestive of crime or other unconventional acts; (3) 
conveying illusions which might prove prejudicial to international relations 
(4) insulting to race, collective groups, or religious sects; (5) offensive to 
national dignity or provocative of defiance to public order. Less than one- 
half of 1 percent of the 1,135,420 meters of film censored during the first 9 
months of 1935 was rejected. 

COMPETITION- 

Approximately 85 percent of all the motion pictures shown in Brazil are 
of American make. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Protection is afforded titles which have been duly registered with the 
Censorship Board of the Ministry of Justice. 

PRODUCTION- 

Four feature films were produced in Brazil during 1937. 
TAXES- 

Taxes are generally regarded as reasonable. No uniforn State or Federal 
taxes are assessed, such taxation being controlled by the various municipali- 
ties. 

V - 

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-35- 



THEATERS- 

According to estimates of those in the trade in Brazil, there are now 
1,246 theaters in operation. 

SOUND- 

Of the 1,246 theaters in operation, 1,084 are wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



12,856,031 ft. 
135,458 ft. 



5J258,336 
S2,814 



1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



12,731,057 ft. 
54,053 ft. 



$251,724 
$931 



BRITISH MALAYA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws in British Malaya prohibiting foreign exchange, nor are 
there any regulations or laws in British Malaya which give preference to 
motion-picture films from any country. 

There are no quota or contingent laws in effect, none are contemplated, 
and it is unlikely that legislation will be enacted in British Malaya which 
would either reduce cr prevent distribution of American motion pictures. 

CENSORSHIP- 

During the first 9 months of 1937, the Official Censor of Cinematograph 
Films, Straits Settlements, Federated Malay States, and Johore, censored 
1,833 films and rejected 44. Out of 44 films rejected in British Malaya, 
75 percent were American. 

1. Censoring fees for censoring original cinematograph films: 

(a) When the projection of the film is for every 100 ft. or 
accompanied by sound S.$1.20 part of 100 ft. of 

film. 

(b) In other cases .60 - do - 



2670 



-36- 



2. For censoring copies of original cinematograph films: 

(a) When the projection of the film is 

accompanied by sound .30 - do - 

(b) In other cases .20 - do - 

3. Upon appeal without the approval of the 

Censor 1.00 

and unless the Committee declares that 

the appeal has been substantially suc- 
cessful a further fee of 10.00 per reel up to 5 

reels and 
5.00 per reel thereafter. 

4. Upon appeal with the approval of the 

Censor 1.00 

and unless the Committee declares that 
the appeal has been substantially suc- 
cessful a further fee of 10.00 _ do - 

The Malayan Film Censor is considered by distributors as very strict. 
Any theme which shows loss of prestige to the white race is banned in Malaya, 
this being true even of certain films which are passed in other countries ia 
southeastern Asia, where political and racial problems are parallel. Pictures 
presenting political views are not strictly censored, but it is believed that 
any film which sponsored extreme communistic views w;uld be eliminated. Ap- 
proval is sometimes given to historical themes having scenes that would be 
cut from any modern theme. 

The chief problem of the censor seems to be one of deciding what is 
suitable for the Asiatic audiences. Apparently the authorities assume that 
certain scenes will instill undesirable ideas among the less well-informed 
classes of Asiatic film goers. There is some criticism rep;arding the censor- 
ship in British Malaya, as most theatergoers believe that it is too strict. 
Murder, gangster, excessive-gunplay, and gruesome films are usually banned. 
There is considerable inconsistency regarding the cutting of gunplay scenes. 
Revolver shootings are invariably cut when carried out by individuals, but 
last year approval was accorded to one American film which showed shooting of 
very large number of Indians who were attempting to protect their lands from 
the whites. A recent article in a local paper stated that the main principle 
laid down for the guidance of the censor is to cut scenes where individuals 
gain their ends through violence or brutality but to allow to pass scenes 
showing large numbers of people doing the same thing in the same way "provided 
the movement is in the right direction". The actual shooting scenes by in- 
dividuals are usually cut, but the audience is allowed to see the screen vil- 



2670 



-37- 



lain reach in his pocket. There follovs an abrupt break, and then the picture 
continvies showing the lifeless victim. 

COMPETITION- 

Sixty-five percent of the films shown in British Malaya are American. 
American films do not have very much competition in British Malaya, for the 
reason that the largest percentage of revenue is derived from Chinese, Euras- 
ians, and Malays who prefer the American films because of their action. 
British films are popular in the cities of Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, and Penang, 
where the majority of the Europeans, who are British, live. 

During the first 10 months of 1937, the average British film has not 
produced very much revenue. There have been a few outstanding British pro- 
ductions which have proved very good box-office attractions. The average 
British film, however, will not produce the same amount of revenue as the 
average American film for the reason statsd above, that the theatergoing 
public prefer the American films because of their action. The tempo and 
deliberate action of the average British film does not appeal to the theater- 
going public . 

Chinese films in the Cantonese dialect are very popular in British Malaya, 
Their greatest appeal, however, is to an audience which would not attend 
American or British productions. Other Chinese dialects are not popular, 
as the Chinese residing in Malaya do not understand them. The Chinese Gov- 
ernment has started agitation to have Chinese film companies produce films in 
the national language (Kuo-U) . If they are successful in forcing Chinese 
film producers to use the national language it will limit their field of dis- 
tribution in British Malaya, where this form of Chinese speech is not gen- 
erally known or understood. 

During recent months, a group of Chinese film importers have combined 
and formed what is known as the Overseas Chinese Films, Ltd. This new organi- 
zation has a working agreement with a large Malayan distributor who has been 
in the business for some time. These two firms control the distribution of all 
*orth-while Chinese studios, and they are reported to be on very friendly 
terms, which will be an advantage to the producers of Chinese films. 

About the only Indian films imported in British Malaya are those pro- 
duced in the Tami] and Hindustani languages. These films appeal to a large 
number of Indian immigrants, most of whom are laborers. Films in other Indian 
dia]ects are not money makers. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There is ample protection for copyrights in British Malaya, and producers 
secure the same protection as they do in the United Kingdom. The local copy- 



2670 



-38- 



right enactments are practically the same as those in the United Kingdom, 
Copyrights in British Malaya are protected under the Merchants Marks Act. 
It is only necessary for the owner of the copyright to publish a declaration 
of ownership in the local newspapers or in the Government Gazettes to secure 
full Government protection. 

PRODUCTION- 

During the first 10 months of 1937, two news reels were produced in 
Malaya. The first was made at the official opening of the Singapore Aerodrome. 
Sections of this news reel were distributed by British Paramount. The second 
production was an industrial film produced for an American rubber company on 
its estates in Malacca. 

During the month of August a local company known as the Malayan Films, 
Ltd., was organized. The laboratory for this organization is now under con- 
struction. The technical work is in charge of an American who is well known 
in the trade in the United States. All equipment is of American manufacture, 
and all technicians are American. The main object of the new company is to 
produce news reels and topographical films. Plans of the new company are not 
definite, but it is believed that it will attempt to produce films which will 
feature native talent. 

American films are not "dubbed" in the native language, but there would 
be no official objection to such action. The theatergoing public throughout 
Malaya is able to follow the theme of the story by the action and sound, and 
there is no advantage in "dubbing". 

Malay is the predominant language of the country, but it varies in dif- 
ferent localities. Next to Malay, Chinese is rather generally understood. 
In the large cities the theatergoing public have some knowledge of English. 



There is no taxation on films in British Malaya. There is a performance 
tax on theaters — imposed by the Police Departments — the scale of which is 
based on the seating capacity. Cinema performances are taxed as follows; 



" " of over 400 people . . 5.00 " 

For second and subsequent performances on the same day, half of the 
above fees is charged. 



STAXE- 



Seating capacity leas than 200 people 

" " not less than 299 people 

" " not more than 399 people 



.S.$2.00 each performance 
3.00 " 

4.00 " " 



2670 



-39- 



THEATERS- 

There were 122 theaters operating in British Malaya during 1936. 

The average price of admission ranges between 10 (Straits) cents, and 

S . ?2 . 

Economic conditions of the theatergoing public in British Kalaya during 
the first IC months of 193," have shown great improvement over those pre- 
vailing during 3936. High prices and increased production of tin and rubber, 
Malaya's chief revenue-producing products, have resulted in increasing spending 
power, which has been reflected in the revenue of the theaters. Malaya's 
secondary products such as pineapples, coconuts, palm oil, sage, etc., have 
been in good demand. Increased wages to laborers have also helped. At the 
present time, the future is fairly bright, and most observers believe that 
conditions in 1938 will be better. 

Three new theaters are under construction, and one is contemplated. The 
one at Seremban is expected to open in December. The new theater at Ipoh will 
open in ^'ay 1938. The Penang theater now under construction has not announced 
its opening date. A large theater is being planned in Singapore. It is 
expected to open the latter part of 1938. 

Motion-picture distributors are very anxious for the new theater to open 
in Singapore, as it will be operated independently and should result in a 
little competition for the monopoly which has controlled the distribution 
of motion-picture films in this city. 

Native audiences prefer films showing a great deal of action. Spectacular 
films are the second choice, followed by musicals and comedies. A large 
percentage of the theatergoing public do not patronize dramas dealing with 
European domestic relations, as they do not understand them, and these plays 
are only popular with European audiences, who contribute very little revenue. 

The yearly gross income from theaters in British Malaya is not known. 
The Registrar of Companies does not require companies to report their income. 

SOUND- 

There are 96 theaters in British Malaya which are wired for sound. 

Inasmuch as most of the theaters are now wired for sound films, the 
prospects for sales of new sound equipment are limited. 

About the only demand for sound equipment will be for the new theaters and 
for replacement parts, Practically all the well-known manufacturers of 
sound equipment have representation in Singapore, and these agents are 
constantly on the alert for sales. 



26.0 



-40- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3.135,290 ft 
25,301 ft 



$65,417 

$905 



1936 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,843,504 ft 



$60,120 



» » * 



BULGARIA 



LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws or regulations prohibiting foreign exchange in Bul- 
garia, and no laws or regulations discriminating against American films were 
promulgated during 1936 or during the first 10 months of 1937. The quota 
regulations of the Bulgarian National Bank which operated as import restric- 
tions on motion-picture films were withdrawn about 2 years ago. The result 
has been an increase in imports during the past 2 years, even though transfers 
of payments for such imports must be made by "compensation" transactions, or 
the payment of an equivalent premium, which increases the cost of the films. 
This premium, for exchange on New York, is about 34 percent at the present 
time. 

CENSORSHIP- 

No film is allowed to be shown in Bulgaria until it has been inspected 
by a special censorship board appointed by the Ministry of Education, and until 
the proper permit has been granted for its projection. The censorship board 
is strictly official. The most important factors in determining the acceptance 
of a film are the following: 1. The film must contain nothing dangerous to 
the State (c^-mmunist or anarchist propaganda). 2. Immoral subjects and pic- 
tures are not allowed. 3. Anything offensive to the Royal House, to the army, 
or to any country with diplomatic relations with Bulgaria, would not be per- 
mitted. 

The censorship for permit for school projection is even more strict 
than for ordinary public-projection films. 

It may happen that files may be found by the censorship to be inadmis- 
sible but may later be admitted if presented to a new censorship board, or if 
parts of the film be cut out, and, similarly, permits properly granted may 
later be revoked by subsequent action of the censorship board. 

All films are treated in the same manner, and there is no discrimination 
of any kind, as regards the country of origin of the film. 



2670 



-41- 



During the year 1936 the Board of Censors passed on 395 films, totaling 
592,002 meters. Practically all of them were sound films, with only a few 
short technical and news reels of the silent class. The following table shows 
the country of origin, number and length of films censored during 1936; 

Number of Length 
Country of ori p;in films in meters 

United States 166 265,314 

Germany 149 165,123 

France 45 94,373 

England 9 23,220 

Russia 8 12,470 

Austria 5 11,840 

Other 13 19,662 



Total 395 592,002 

During the same period six films were rejected by the Beard of Censors, of 
which two were American, one of which, however, was released for projection in 
1937. 

COMPETITION- 

Forty-two percent of the films shown are American. As noted in the 
above table, the largest competitors of Amarican films on this market are the 
German films, followed by the French. All these films are well received in 
Bulgaria and are preferrsd to domestic or locally produced films, which in 
fact, are few in number and inferior in quality. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There has been no change in the copyright law of July 8, 1921. 

PRODUCTION- 

Because of lack of capital and competent native artists and camera-men, 
there are no studios equipped for sound or silent film production in Bulgaria. 
A few short silent news reels were produced, and an historical film of about 
2,400 meters und-ar the name "Gramada" (The Pile of Stones") was made in 1935 
by a Bulgarian camera-man and was projected in 1936. The reception of it, 
however, was not enthusiastic. 

During 1936 a second Bulgarian historical film under the name of "Strahil 
Voivoda" was made by the National Studio Film (Bavaria), but it is not yet 
ready for projection. 



2670 



-42- 



The only other producing activity during the year consisted in collabora- 
tion with German and Czechoslovak firms (UFA and Slovia Film) using local 
settings and Bulgarian artists for parts of the films "Port Arthur" and 
"Michael Strogoff". ■ 

The predominant language of the country is Bulgarian, but French and Ger- 
man are understood by a large portion-of the theatergoing population. American 
and foreign films do not need to be "dubbed" in Bulgarian. Such films in 
their native language, with subtitles in Bulgarian, made in this country, are 
preferred to the "dubbed" films. 

TAXES- 

In consequence of a new ticket tax for the National Theater Fund, in addi- 
tion to the excise duty, local taxes on films are relatively high. 

It is estimated that taxes imposed upon theaters in Bulgaria amount to 
30 percent of the gross turnover, of which 17 percent is a direct tax, and 
13 percent is stamp duty and the special fund tax. The taxes imposed on 
distributors amount to 2 percent of the gross turnover, in addition to the 
import duty, which is 10 gold leva per kilogram, or about 9,000 leva per film. 

THEATERS- 

There are 100 motion-picture theaters operating in Bulgaria, all but 
three of which have sound-on-f ilm equipment. In addition to these there 
are several picture houses temporarily closed for lack of means to install 
sound equipment, and lack of good silent films on the market. The total 
seating capacity of Bulgarian motion-picture theaters is 40,837 seats, with 
an average admission price ranging from 5 to 26 leva for the larger theaters, 
5 to 21 leva for those of medium size, and 4 to 16 leva for the smaller houses. 
At the present rate of exchange one dollar is equivalent to about 84 leva, or 
one leva equals approximately $0,012. 

It is estimated that the yearly gross income of the Bulgarian motion- 
picture houses is from 5,000,000 leva ($1 equals 84 leva; for general calcu- 
lations 1 million leva may be considered as about $11,900) to 9,000,000 
leva, of which 4,000,000 to 7,000,000 leva is gross income for the large 
theaters (first run) and 1,000,000 to 2,000,000 leva for the second-run (small 
and provincial theaters) . 

The type of films best liked by local audiences are the musical and ro- 
mantic films. Good comic films are also popular. 

Up to the present time no subsidy or assistance of any kind has been 
granted by the Bulgarian Government for developing the local motion-picture 
industry, the chief reason being that there has not yet been a serious project 
for producing first-class Bulgarian films. 



2670 



-43- 



SOUND- 



Ninety-seven theaters are wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



19; 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



415,098 ft. 
6,728 ft. 



$9,092 

$200 



1936 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



695,617 ft 



$12,379 



« * « 



CANADA 



LEGISLATION- 

Foreign exchange is available on an open, free market through the usual 
commercial banking facilities with rates controlled exclusively by supply 
and demand. There has been no suggestion or demand for Federal control of 
foreign exchange. When the market price for gold in Canada was revised upward, 
provision was made for an Exchange Stabilization Fund to protect the external 
value of the Canadian dollar, but the authority has never been exercised. 

Aside from the Customs Tariff, which provides a lower rate on films 
from countries subject to the British Preferential rates and exempts such im- 
ports from the special excise tax of 3 percent, there is no Federal law which 
provides a preference for films of non-American origin. Under trade agreements 
with France and Poland, the lower British Preferential rate of duty is made 
applicable to films made in these countries and speaking the language of the 
country of origin. There are no quota or contingent laws in effect. 

The Provincial governments of Ontario and New Brunswick request that 
news reels exhibited in those areas contain 50 percent British and Canadian 
content. This content requirement is not a law but simply a regulation of the 
censorship authorities, and news reels of less than the prescribed Canadian^ 
British content merely result in a conversation between the censor board and 
the distributing company. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The Provincial governments in Canada exercise censorship of films, 
this being a subject beyond Federal constitutional powers. Eight of the 
nine Provincial governments have censor boards, and, as annual reports are oh 
a fiscal-year basis, varying in date in the several Provinces, a consolidated 
statement of censorship in the market cannot be prepared. In any event the 



2670 



-44- 



regional government figures are likely to be misleading because in some cases 
distributors present five copies of a film for censorship, for example, and in 
other instances as many as 15 copies are presented. 

Trade-association statistics of censorship for 1936 indicate that the 
main features submitted included 425 United States films, 35 British films, and 
111 from France. This does not include short features and news reels. The 
total number of censorship rejections that year by all eight censor boards 
was 16, of which 7 were rejected by Quebec authorities. There was a higher 
percentage of rejections of British pictures than of United States pictures. 
In 1936 the rejection of United States pictures was less than 2 percent. 

Short subjects and news reels are also subject to Provincial censorship, 
and advertising matter is submitted for review. In some cases 16-mm. films, 
known to the trade as amateur films and available for showing on a rental 
basis, are subject to censorship. 

Censorship statistics for Ontario, the most populous province, are 
probably representative for Canada except Quebec, where French is the pre- 
dominating language and the influence of the Catholic Church is strong in all 
social matters. In the fiscal year ended March 31 the Ontario censor board 
reported that their 16 licensed film exchanges submitted a total of 2,107 sub- 
jects which represented about 7,000,000 feet of film. Of the total, 1,735, 
or more than 82 percent, were approved without change and 369, or 17i. percent, 
were passed after certain deletions were made. Three subjects were not ap- 
proved. Out of 26,237 specimens of advertising submitted, only 140 were re- 
quired to be altered before use, and only 110 were rejected. The censor board 
noted a much greater number of deletions from British films than were required 
from these of other countries. Of 127 British films submitted, nearly 25 
percent required alteration. "There have been several notable films recently 
dealing with British history and literature, but the board notes a strange 
paradox — the best 'British' films are 'American Made'," states the report. 

Censorship in Canada is not strict in the full sense of that word, and 
in recent years has become more liberal. For example, in 1929 there were 219 
rejections. In the last 5 years the percentage of Ontario rejections has 
declined from 1.6 percent of total submissions to 0.2 percent. Points of 
objection naturally vary among the several censor boards, but the majority of 
complaints can be traced to moral or political reasons or a combination of 
the two. Internal regulation and censorship within the United States film 
industry is unquestionably a factor in the recent trend of reduced cuts and 
rejections by the Canadian authorities. 

Canada, as a contiguous export market for United States films and motioji- 
picture equipment, probably has more in common with the domestic film market 
than with the foreign market which the American industry serves. Geographical 
propinquity, similarity of living standards, style preferences, and social 



2670 



-45- 



organization, plus the extensive infiltration of motion-picture publicity and 
music via radio and magazines and identical commercial practices in distribu- 
tion of films, serve to emphasize the similarity between the Canadian and the 
domestic American market for the motion-picture industry. 

COMPETITION- 

British films provide the chief competition to American films in Canada. 
French films cover a special field in Quebec where that language predcminates 
and the French origin of the feature has a special attraction to the popula- 
tion, not provided by either British or American films. Figures of numerical 
releases provided earlier indicate that nearly 75 percent of the main features 
shown in Canada were from the United States, less than 20 percent from France, 
and about 6 percent from the United Kingdom, However, the extent of dis- 
tribution of the films after release makes it necessary to adjust the above 
distribution in estimating the competitive position, The number of prints 
required of American and British films is greater than for French films because 
the latter serve only one section of the country, namely, Quebec. Accurate 
figures are obviously impossible, but from the standpoint of box-office re- 
ceipts it is probable that American films provide more than 90 percent, British 
films about 5 percent, French films about 5 percent, and other foreign-language 
films a negligible proportion. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Canadian laws provide adequate copyright protection against piracy of 
imported films and features. 

PRODUCTION- 

Strictly speaking, there is no regular production in Canada of feature., 
films. In 1936 Gaumont-British produced "Silent Barriers" as a narrative of 
the building of the Canadian Pacific Railway and some United States producers 
have made pictures in Canada of the Dionne quintuplets, completing the film in ^ 
Hollywood. Associated Screen News Limited produces some industrial subjects 
eind provides a news-reel service in Canada, Central Films Limited, Victoria, 
British Columbia, was established to produce films to meet the British quota 
law and claims a production to date of 10 motion pictures which have been 
shown in Canada, the United States, and Great Britain, Production facilities 
in Car.ada would include three plants, at Montreal, Toronto, and Victoria. 
Facilities for the production of motion pictures actually exist in Canada, but 
such production is economically impossible in the case of feature pictures 
and there is not a national impulse to produce pictures in Canada, such as is 
found in some countries, Australia for example. 

TAXES- 

The Federal, Provincial, and municipal governments levy taxation in var- 
ious forms on the motion-picture industry. 



^670 



-46- 



Item 657a of the Customs Tariff, covering standard motion-picture films, 
positives, provides a rate of 1\ cents per foot on imports of film entitled to 
British Preferential treatment (also on French-speaking and Polish-speaking 
films from France and Poland) and a rate of 3 cents per linear foot on imports 
from all other countries. In addition, films subject to duty under all tariff 
items must pay the sales tax of 8 percent and from countries other than those 
entitled to the British Preferential tariff the special excise tax of 3 per- 
cent. In computing these percentage levies, the value of positive motion- 
picture films has been declared to be 8 cents per foot under an order of the 
Department of National Revenue dated February 23, 1914. Therefore, the sales 
tax of 8 percent on British films is computed on the duty-paid value of 9i 
cents a foot. The sales and excise tax (11 percent) is computed on French- 
speaking and Polish-speaking films on a duty-paid value of 9i cents per foot, 
and the sales and special excise tax (11 percent) is computed on films from the 
United States and other countries on a duty-paid value of 11 cents per foot. 
Tariffs, representing one form of taxation, also apply to motion-picture pro- 
jectors, theater equipment, and most other essentials required by exhibitors. 

Motion-picture distributors, along with other corporations, must pay the 
regular Federal income tax of 15 percent. Where a Canadian motion-picture dis- 
tributing corporation pays dividends or interest abroad, a tax of 5 percent is 
collected at the source. Under amendments to the income tax in May, 1936, a 
special additional income tax of 5 percent was levied on 40 percent of the 
payments, direct or indirect, from Canadian debtors to persons non-resident of 
Canada when such payments were in respect +o the use or rights in any motion- 
picture film. This, therefore, represents 2 percent of payments made by 
distributors to non-Canadian film companies for the rights to exhibit films 
in Canada. 

There are no amusement taxes in Prince Edward Island, Ontario, or Sas- 
katchewan, but the oxher six Provincial governments levy taxes which are 
considered by the trade as representing rather high taxation. The provincial 
censorship fee may also be viewed in one respect as a tax. The Provincial 
governments in eight instances also levy license taxes on theaters, while the 
municipal governments also impose a tax on theaters. 

THEATERS- 

According to statistics compiled by the Canadian film boards of trade 
in May 1937, the number of theaters in 659 Canadian towns was 1,089, providing 
an aggregate seating capacity of 603,346. 

SOUND- 

All of the 1,039 theaters in Canada are wired for sound. There is a 
good replacement market for projectors and sound equipment, as indicated by~ 
the fact that in 1936 imports of motion-picture projectors, arc lamps, spot- 



-47- 



-lights, light-effect machines, screens, portable projectors complete with 
sound equipment, and similar theatrical equipment amounted to $202,379, of 
which the United States supplied $200,568. The above does not include sound 
equipment for projectors other than portable, such goods being included in 
statistics for imported electrical goods. Imports of miscellaneous electrical 
goods, other than specific items, amounted to $1,631,859 from the United 
States in 1936. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



6,110,452 ft. 
4.507,801 ft. 



$209,357 
$175,752 



1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



5.110,480 ft. 
4,309,436 ft. 



$190,372 
$160,295 



CEYLON 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws prohibiting foreign exchange and none giving other 
countries preference over American films. . 

No quota or contingent laws are in effect or contemplated. 

CENSORSHIP- -••:XA': 

The censorship of all public performances is vested, under municipal 
bylaws, in the Municipal Commissioner, who is assisted to a very great extent 
by the police. The managers of the theaters are required to send to the 
police a synopsis of every film 3 days before it is to be shown. The police 
either exercise their own discretion in passing the film with or without ex- 
cisions or report it to the Municipal Commissioner as containing undesirable 
features. On receipt of such a report the Commissioner orders a private show- 
ing of the picture, at which he is assisted by the police and a number of 
ladies and gentlemen competent to express an opinion, and a final decision is 
reached either releasing the film in its entirety or subject to excision, 
or completely banning it. In order to minimize inconvenience to the theaters, 
films that have been banned by certain authorities such as the British Board of 
Film Censors are blacklisted by the police and banned in advance by the Com- 
missioner so that they are not imported. ^ • ■ 

During 1937, 13 films were, totally rejected on religious, pjlitioa^. 
or moral grounds. 



2670 



-48- 



The first two films were rejected on religious grounds and the remainder 
were banned in Ceylon because boards of censors elsewhere, such as the British 
Board of Censors whose rulings are usually followed in Ceylon, had prohibited 
their exhibition elsewhere. No films were banned in part. 

No strict censorship is required in Ceylon, because films imported 
for exhibition here have been prsviously examined and passed or rejected 
in whole or in part. 

COMPETITION- 

British films are the largest competitors of American films. About 60 
percent of the films shov/n in Ceylon are of American manufacture. 

American films are well received in Ceylon, but there is not as much 
preference for them as some years ago, inasmuch as the quality of British 
films is steadily improving. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

As no films are produced locally, no special copyright protection is 
required in Ceylon. 

PRODUCTION- 

No motion pictures are produced in Ceylon. 

TAXES- 

The taxation of the motion-picture industry in Ceylon consists of: 
A tax on net income; an import duty of two-thirds of 1 rupee cent per foot 
in the case of films of British origin and 1 rupee cent per foot for films 
of foreign origin; an annual license fee (payable to the Municipal Council), 
which is based on the seating accommodation of each theater, the chargeable 
fees being as follows: 

Seating accommodation for 500 persons or more Rs. 500.00 

Seating accommodations for 200 persons or more Rs . 250.00 
Seating accommodations for less than 200 

persons ; Rs . 125.00 

An annual tax of 20 percent of the rental value of the property to the 
Colombo Municipality; an annual fixed sum of money to the Performing Rights 
Society, Ltd., for the music played (this tax amounts to the proceeds from the 
sale of all seats in the theater for one performance) . 



2670 



-49- 



THEATERS- 

There are 19 motion-picture theaters in Ceylon, of which only 16 show 
pictures regularly. The total seating capacity of these theaters is estimated 
at 11,970, and the average price of admission is Rs. 2.50 ($0.92) for balcony 
seats and Rs. 1.00 ($0.37) for orchestra seats. 

English-speaking Ceylonese prefer American or British films, but non- 
EngMsh-speaking Ceylonese attend only films in the vernacular, the majority 
of which are made in India. 

The estimated yearly gross income is Rs. 800,000. 

SOUND- 

Eighteen theaters are wired for showing sound films. 

There is little prospect of selling sound equipment to theaters a+ 
present unv.'ired, but several theaters have antiquated sound equipment that 
will shortly have to be replaced, 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

193.' - Positive sound — — 

Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 41,034 ft. $1,241 
Negative sound 

* * * 
CHILE 

LEGISLATION- 

As there is no local production, except for an occasional scenic short, 
no quota or contingent laws are in effect or contemplated, nor is there any 
legislation contemplated at presan**. that might reduce or prevent distribution 
of American motion pictures. 

CENSORSHIP- 

This is not severe; 456 pictures have been reviewed by the Board of Cen- 
sors so far in 1937 and only five were rejected, none of which were American. 
There are only two grounds for rejection, immorality and anything that might 
have a tendency to cause political unrest. 



2670 



-50- 



The showing of American films portraying the aftermath of war was pro- 
hibited by the Provincial authorities in the Province of Santiago at the 
request of the Ministry of National Defense, although this film had been ap- 
proved by the Board of Censors. The reason given was that it tended to dis- 
parage patriotism. The Board of Censors confirmed its prior decision, and 
peace organi7ation3 rushed to the rescue with the result that showings of the 
picture were continued. 

COMPETITION- 

The most important competition comes from German, French, and British 
although the latter were probably more severely affected during 1937 by the 
exchange conditions mentioned than were American films. There are given below 
comparative figures supplied by the Board of Censors for the first 6 months of 
1936 and 1937, from which it will be seen that the United States supplied 76 
percent of the total feature pictures, a percentage which will undoubtedly 
be diminished during the latter half of the year for the reason which has 
been given: 

1 936 1937 
News News 
Features reels, etc. Features reels, etc 

United States . . 182 

Germany 17 

England 14 

Italy 

Spain 17 

France 11 

Argentina 3 

Mexico 1 

Soviet Union 

Arabia 

Total 245 

While American films are preferred in the better theaters, those with 
Spanish dialogue are more popular in second-run and neighborhood theaters. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There has been no change in the copyright law within the past year. 
Decree Law No. 345 of March 17, 1925, is still applicable. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is periodic agitation in the press for the creating of a national 
film industry, the undoubted scenic attractions of Chile and its favorabl-e 



257 206 - 341 

25 13 15 

1 10 ~ 

9 - 5 

9 3- 

7 22 

4 1 

308 271 362 



2670 



-51- 



climate being given as the basis on which suoh an industry could be developed. 
However, except for a few shorts sponsored by the Tourist Bureau, there is no 
local production nor any immediate prospects of developments along this line. 



The Chilean Government established a National Theater Bureau in 1935 
by Law No. 5533 for the purpose of developing dramatic art and encouraging 
Chilean artists and dramatists. Some efforts have been made to fulfill the 
objectives jf this law, and the Carrera Theater is under lease to the National 
Theater Buraau for its spectacles. In the absence of interest on the part of 
Chilean capital, it is not likely that the Government would go to any great 
lengths to implant a domestic industry which would require such large sums 
as would be needed for the production of motion pictures that could compete 
with those from abroad. 

-iiC- 

A few years ago some American fil.-ns were "dubbed" in Spanish, the language 
of the country, but the results were so unsatisfactory that this was discon- 
tinued. However, lectures accompanying travel pictures are usually in Spanish,' 
and it has been noticed that recent showings of short educational anti-crime 
pictures which are "dubbed" in Spanish seem to be well received. However, 
we are convinced that Spanish-speaking pictures would be much more popular 
if the Latin American accent were used rather than the Castilian, as the 
latter is not liked in Chile and is frequently ridiculed. Also, these voices 
are frequently too harsh. It should not be difficult, with the large Latin 
American population in the United States, to improve this aspect of picture 
production . 



TAXES- 



Taxation is high, the following rates being those assessed on theaters, 
distributors, and the importation of films: 



Theaters : 



5 percent on profits 

10 " admission price 

2.5 " total sales 



Distributors: 2.5 " on sales - Sales Tax. 

.6 " " " - Income Tax. 



Imports: Law 5786 - 5 percent on the landed invoice value 

including duties. 

Daties: Castoms item No, 1824 - equivalent to ap- 
proxiaataly $3 U. S. currency per legal kilogram at 
present exchange rates. 



THEATERS- 



It is difficult to obtain accurate figures on the number of theaters 
in C'.iile, with their seating capacity, the data on some of the northern 



2670 



-52- 



sections of the country being particularly meager. According to the Cine- 
matographic Yearbook for 1937 and data obtained since this was issued early in 
1937, there is a total of 233 theaters in Chile, with an estimated seating 
capacity of 200,000.- According to the yearbook, at least 10 of these are 
closed, and no statistics are given on the seating capacity or the equipment 
of many others. Also, it would appear that there are many which do not rate 
the name of "theater" as Americans understand it, consisting of rooms or small 
halls which are used only occasionally for showing motion pictures. 

The usual admission charge for orchestra seats in the better down-town 
theaters of Santiago is 6 pesos for the 6:30 and 10:00 P.M. shows, being some- 
what less for the matinees. However, average admission prices here are: 

3.40 pesos for orchestra seats 
1.60 " " balcony 
0.80 " " gallery 

The type of films best liked by Chilean audiences depends on the type of 
audience, as light comedies and dramas — if there is not too much conver- 
sation — are popular with the better educated while the poorer classes show 
a preference for adventure films, but, in general, it may be said that light 
musical pictures are most favored. "Alia en el Rancho Grande" was one of the 
most popular films, among all classes, ever shown in Santiago, combining as it 
did their own language, catchy songs, and a presentation of country life very 
similar to that known here. 

The yearly gross income of motion-picture theaters in Chile is estimated 
to be in the neighborhood of 55 million pesos. 

It is estimated that the total investment in the local motion-picture 
industry amounts to 125 million pesos. This covers distribution and exhibi- 
tion, since there is, as previously stated, no local production. 

SOUND- 

According to the Cinematographic Yearbook and other sources, it would 
appear that there are 192 theaters wired for sound in Chile, but the repre- 
sentative of an American film company gives the number as 185. The only 
prospect for selling sound equipment would be the construction of new theaters, 
as, even though there may be about 50 silent ones in the country, most of 
these are old buildings located in the north where the population has de- 
creased with the lessening in importance of the nitrate industry. Six new 
theaters were opened in Santiago during 1936. and four have been opened thus 
far in 1937, so it is unlikely that there will be many new ones for some 
time to come, as the saturation point seems to have been reached. 



2670 



-53- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



4,514.614 ft 
18.762 ft 



$292, 123 
$1,129 



1936 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,836,373 ft 
28,842 ft 



$160,934 
$1,019 



♦ ♦ * 



CHINA 



LEGISLATION- 

The Mukden motion-picture law promulgated on October 7, 1937, designated 
the Manchuria Motion Picture Association a State Company with a monopoly of 
importing and exporting, manufacturing and distributing motion-picture films. 
American companies have announced that they would not distribute through a 
State monopoly. 

As a result of the petition made by the representatives of the Hong Kong 
South China Film Producers Association and the Canton Exhibitors' Union, the 
Central Propaganda Bureau has granted a 3-year postponement on the ban of 
Cantonese films under eight specified conditions. As both the producers and 
exhibitors are satisfied with these concessions, a further petition jointly 
made by other commercial bodies and themselves for modifications of the 
conditions was refused and notification given to the effect that none of the 
eight conditions should be modified and also that no board of censors would 
be established in Canton. 

The eight conditions laid down by the Central Propaganda Bureau (Publicity 
Department of the Central Executive Committee) are as follows: 

1. The ban on Cantonese pictures will be postponed until June 30, 1940. 

■ 2. During these 3 years, for the purpose of advancing and unifying the 
national language, the Cantonese producers must both produce and 
exhibit short subjects in the national language with the Cantonese 
features in the following proportions : 

First year, 10 percent should be short subjects of national language. 

Second year, 20 percent should be short subjects of national language. 

Third year, 30 percent should be short subjects of national language. 



2670 



_54r 



3. In order that tie Cantonese film producers may be able to make pic- 
tures in the national language after the 3-year period, the producers 
should also make pictures of feature length in the national language during 
these 3 years in the following manner; 

At least 1 national-language feature in the first year. 
2 " " features " " second 

II II 3 II 11 II II II third " 

4. The censorship of Cantonese pictures is strictly subject to the 
Central Plays, Stories, and Cinema-films Censorship regulations. 

5. From the 1st of August, 1936, pictures without Nanking Censorship 
Certificates cannot be shown in either Kwangtung or Kwangsi Provinces. 
(South China Provinces speak predominantly Cantonese dialect.) 

6. The Central Board of Censors should cooperate with the producers 
by givirg them every facility in handling the censorship of their films. 

7. Instructions have been given to Kwangtung and Kwangsi Provinces 
requesting their cooperation in the enforcement of these conditions. 

8. Communications have also been conveyed to the Executive Yuan, Do- 
m^estic Affairs Yuan, and the Ministry of Education, requesting their 
efforts for the full developmert of the national language in the Canton- 

-r : . ese-speaking area (including Hong Kong and the South Sea Islands).. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Acting on suggestions contained in a petition formulated and presented 
by the Film Board of Trade (China), an organization representing the eight 
major American film companies in China, and prompted by the present hostili- 
ties, the Central Film Censorship Board has moved its headquarters from Nanking 
to Shanghai in order to expedite the censorship of foreign motion pictures and 
avoid possible delays or even loss of shipments caused by the uncertainty and 
partial disruption of transportation facilities between Nanking and Shanghai. 

Statistics obtained from the Film Board of Trade (China) and based upon 
reports from the Central Film Censorship Board reveal that during the first 
6 months of 1937 the following number of feature motion pictures, short sub- 
jects, and news reels were submitted to the Nanking authorities for approval: 

Feature films; American, 161 (including 11 of British origin but re- 
leased through American companies); Chinese, 36; German, 6; U. S. S. R., 7; 
British, 5. 



2670 



-55- 



The 161 American feature films represent a total of 354,889 meters, as 
compared with 166 features with a total of 594,135 meters during the cor- 
responding period in 1936. The gain in the number of Chinese pictures sub- 
mitted to the Nanking censorship board is due to the fact that the Nanking 
authorities now inspect all films produced in the Canton and Hong Kong area, 
whereas formerly all such pictures were submitted to a board in Canton which 
operated independently of the board in Nanking. 



Short subjects: American 



1 - 2-reelers 36 

2 - 1-reelers and cartoons 226 

3 - News reels 106 

4 - Advertising specials 2 

5 - British origin but released 

by American companies... 5 

Total 375 



British 

Chinese 

U. S. S. R 
German 



2 

50 reels (educational) 
2 

1 (5 reels - educational) 



The 375 American snort subjects represent a total of 186,694 meters, 
while an additional 12,000 meters in the form of advertising trailers were also 
submitted for inspection. 

It is reported that all films submitted to the Central Film Censorship 
Board during the period under review were given certificates for exhibition and 
that several American features which were being held under advisement were 
passed after deletions had been made. 

It is estimated that, during the first 6 months of 1937, the eight major 
American film distributors in China paid a total of 31,528 yuan to the Central 
Film Censorship Board in censor fees, while an additional 10,100 yuan was 
spent for translation requirements, printed forms, and in shipping costs to 
Nanking. 

The liquidation of the Kwangtung quasi independent Provincial regime 
during 1936, and the amalgamation of this important area with that of the 
National Government had a direct effect upon the censorship requirements for- 
merly enforced at Canton. Prior to the direct control of this area by the 
National Government, Canton demanded a censorship fee in addition to the fee 
levied by the Central Motion Picture Censorship Board in Nanking. This Canton 
requirement was in complete disregard of instructions issued by the Nanking 
authorities which stated that all films passed by the Central Motion Picture 



2670 



-56- 



Censorship Board were free from further provincial censorship in China. Upon 
the fall of this semi-independent political regime in July, the Canton Censor 
ship Board was abolished, and all motion pictures have since been relieved of 
this local administration. In addition to Nanking censorship, loc'al censor- 
ship at no additional charge is enforced in the International Settlement and 
French Concession at Shanghai; separate certificates are necessary for the 
British Crown Colony of Hong Kong for which a nominal charge is made, while 
films entering Manchuria (as disxinguished from the South Manchuria Railway 
Zone) must first pass the censorship of the Department of Civil Affairs at 
Hsinking (formerly known as Changchun). Films entering the South Manchuria 
Railway Zone are charged a nominal inspection fee by the Dairen police, which 
permits their exhibition throughout this entire area without further censoring. 

When feature motion pictures imported from abroad are submitted to the 
Censorship Board at Nanking for inspection, they must be accompanied by 20 
printed copies of an English-Chinese translation of the story, its dialog and 
action, as well as a table of contents of each separate reel; 10 printed copies 
of the dialog and action as translated for the title slides that will subse- 
quently be made and used in conjunction with the actual showing of the film 
or be subsequently engraved on the emulsion of the film itself, and 4 complete 
copies of the foreign-language continuity detailing the dialog and action. 
Shorts and news reels require 16 printed copies of a Chinese translation of the 
dialog, titles, and action, while trailers require 8 copies. All of the 
above printed matter, with the exception of the foreign-language continuities, 
which are generally made up in the country of origin, must be printed on 
special forms authorized by the Censor Board and at the expense of the dis- 
tributor. The Censorship fee levied by the Nanking authorities is 20 yuan 
per 500 meters or fraction thereof. After the Board's approval, a license 
and tax fee amounting to 3.10 yuan is charged per subject. Stronger measures 
have recently been adopted whereby the prints of all foreign motion pictures 
imported into China and deemed derogatory to the nation by the Central Film 
Censorship Board will be confiscated. In addition to this, there are strong 
possibilities that efforts will be made to have every motion picture that has 
been judged derogatory to China confiscated and destroyed, exhibited neither 
in China nor anywhere abroad. It is said that any producer refusing to comply 
will find his product banned from China permanently. 

COMPETITION- 

Eighty-five percent of the films shown in China are American. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

United States Commercial Treaty of October 8, 1903, provides for recip 
rocal protection. 



2670 



PRCDUCTXON-^ . . 

It is estimated that approximately ',5 feature films were produced during 
liZ .' in the studios of Shanghai and Canton. 

Taxation, is. high and varies in different parts of the country. .rr-'i^.r": 



THE/TERS- 

There are approximately 300 motion-picture theaters in China. 



SOUND- 



Approximately 225 theaters are wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



193V - Positive sound 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 
Nega+ive sound 



899,Vd7 6 ft. $14,948 

2,402 ft. $38 

1,429.056 ft. $23,763 

56,780 ft. $496 



* * * 



CHOSEN (KOREA) 

LEGISLATION- 

Foreign Exchar.g3 Control Lav/ No. 28, promulgated in Japan Proper on 
N'arch 22, 1933, -..as m?,de applicable to Chosen on 'ilay 1, 1933, by law No. 66 
promulgated on April 26, 1j33. In addition to the foregoing. Government 
General No. <0 of April 26, 1933, v,as issued for the purpose of controlling 
foreign exchange in Chosen. In g^neral, the same lav.s apply in Chosen as in 
Japan Proper; and all . foreign films shown in Chosen are first imported into 
Japan ar.d later distributed in the peninsula. 

There are no lav.s or regilations giving any foreign country a preference 
in the matter of motion-picture films. 

The following articles of Order No. 82, dated August 7, 1934, of the 
Government General of Chosen are quoted as of interest in this connection: 

- "Article 5. The- Provincial Governor may, when he deems it necessary, 
restrict the kinds and- volume of motion pictures to be shown, either for one 
performance, or for one month, and the showing hours therefor. 



26.0 



-58- 



"Article 7. The Governor General of Chosen may, when he deems it neces- 
sary, order the showing of necessary motion pictures, notwithstanding the re- 
striction provided for in article 5." 

Under the authority of the above-quoted article it was ruled in 1934 and 
1935 that one-fourth of all pictures shown in Chosen should be Japanese and/or 
Korean. During 1936 the ratio of domestic films (Japanese or Korean) was 
raised to one-third, and beginning with 1937 the ratio was further raised 
to one-half. 



A very large proportion of foreign films shown in Chosen have been of 
American origin, imported into Japan and distributed to the peninsula. 



CENSORSHIP- 



According to information obtained from the censor of the Government 
General of Chosen, motion-picture films censored during 1936 were as follows, 
no data as yet being available for 1937: 



1936 Percentage 

R eels Meters of tota l 

Japanese films 9,735 2,151,088 66 percent 

American fi].fs 3,790 906. 17^ 2S por-ent 

European films 867 217,750 6 percent 



14,392 3,275,015 100 percent 



No films were wholly rejected, but the following pieces and lengths 
were cut under an existing strict censorship to prevent the showing of films 
considered to be dangerous to the public peace or to conflict with native 
customs : 



1936 

No. of Length of 
places films cut 

cut , by .censor 

Meters 

Japanese films 203 647.10 

American films 324 1,008.40 

European films 89 298,15 



616 1.953.65 



Percentage 



Total length of films censored 3,275,015.00 

Total length of films cut by censor 1,953.65 0.0006 

Total length of American films censored 906,177.00 

Total length of American films cut by censor 1,003.40 0.001 



2670 



-59- 



COMPETITION- 

As indicated above, only Japanese films compete strongly with American 
films. About five times as much American film is shown as from all other 
foreign countries, wliich include, in tb© order stated, Germany, England, 
France, and Russia. More specifically, of the films shown, 66 percent are 
Japanese, 28 percent American, and 6 percent from all other countries. 

American films are preferred by reason of their good acting, attractive 
scenery, and the insight .they give into the modern ways. of. the. Occident. 

COPYRIGHT REUTIONS- ... 

The copyright laws of Japan Proper were made applicable to Chosen by 
Imperial Ordinance No. 338 of .August 29, 1910 ; . and . regulations . for enforcing, 
those laws were promulgated by the Ministry of Internal Affairs on July 28, 
1931. That is to say, copyrights have the same degree of respect in Chosen 
as in Japan Proper. . 

PRODUCTION- 

Only a small number of motion pictures are taken in Chosen, these being- 
taken by amateurs for personal use and by Government agencies for propaganda 
purposes. Only slight attempts have been made to commercialize locally pro- 
duced motion pictures with complete failure so far. 

There are no subsidies for the motion-picture industries in Chosen. 
However, a sum of money is appropriated by the Government each year for 
motion-picture films for education, advertising, and official propaganda. 

American films are not "dubbed", though there would be no objection 
to doing so in the two predominant languages — - Korean and Japcinese. English- 
language films must be presented to the censor with two explanatory pamphlets 
or the whole spoken part translated into one of the local languages. Trans-, 
lations, in ideographs, of titles and substance of films are shown for those 
not understanding English. 



TAXES - 

The following shows rates of taxes on theaters in several cities and 
sections of Chosen: 



2670 



-60- 



Cities, towns, 

and vi llag es Rate of tax es 

Seoul 3 percent of the total receipts. 

Kunsan 50.00 yen per month. 

Shingishu , 3 percent of the total receipts. 

Genzan The same amount as the highest 

admission fee for 3 persons. 

Mokpo 1.00 yen per day. 

Some towns 0.3 to 0.5 percent of the total 

receipts . 

Rural districts 1.5 to 5 percent of the total re- 
ceipts . 

Distributors selling films pay a national business tax of 12/10,000 of 
the amount of sales and prefectural tax of about the same amount. 

Distributors renting films pay a national business tax of 7/1,000 of 
the amount received in rents, and about the same amount to the prefecture. 

Distributors, acting only as agents, pay a national business tax of 
10/1,000 of the amount of their commissions, together with a similar amount 
to the prefecture. 

The import duty on films is set forth in Item 2, Article 636, of the 
Japanese Import Tariff; viz.. 

Unit Rate 

Films for photographs: 

2. Developed 1 kin, including 

inner package 11.13 yen 

(1 kin is equal to 1.32277 lbs.) 

THEATERS- 

The number of motion-picture theaters in Chosen is 56, though films are 
shown at about 65 other theaters and halls. 

The following statement regarding motion-picture entertainments, au- 
diences, and admissions was furnished by the Statistical Department of the 
Government General of Chosen: 
2670 



-61- 



Number of Number of 

motion-picture audiences Admission 

sh Qgs in 19j $ in , 1936 fees 

Motion-picture theaters 16,935 6,795,416 Yl, 762, 435 

Other theaters 7,067 1,430,812 353,451 

Other places 3,220 666,103 135,025 



27,222 8,892,331 Y2, 250, 911 

The average price of admission to motion-pictures in Chosen in 1936 was 
0.25 yen, or about 8 cents American money. In Seoul the highest admission 
is 1 yen, or about 30 cents, and the lowest is .10 yen, or about 3 cents. 

Dramatic, romantic, tragic, and comedy films appear to have equal popu- 
larity. Owing to the present China emergency, war and battle films are viewed 
with special interest. 

SOUND- 

Forty-six theaters are wired for sound films, 24 having American equipment 
and 22 Japar;ese equipment. 

According to local dealers, one or two r.en theaters will desire to obtain 
American sound equipme'.t, a;.d about 15 existing theaters would like to in- 
stall American equipment in place of the present Japanese equipment; however, 
by reason of the "Chosen North China Emergency Tax Ordinance", promulgated on 
August 12, 1937, projectors and parts and accessories thereof imported or 
sold shall be subject to an ad valorem tax of 20 percent in addition to the 
import duty of 40 percent provided for in articles 553-1 and 554-2-A of the 
Japanese Import Tariff, a tax that makes installation difficult and unlikely 
at present. 



COLOMBIA 

LEGISLATION- 

None. 
CENSORSHIP- 

The censorship of films comes under the direct ccntrol of the National 
Government in accordance with the provisions of Censorship Decrees Nos. 331 
and 700 of 1932. Boards of censorship in each Departmental capital, consisting 
of three members and three alternates (five members and alternates in the 
City of Bogota), serving without remuneration, review pictures in each Depart- 
ment. Once a picture has been passed by two members of any departmental 
board of censors the law prescribes that it may be exhibited throughout the 
2670 



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Republic without further censorship. However, in practice certain departmental 
boards of censors insist upon approving a previously censored picture before 
allowing it to be shown in the district under their jurisdiction. Censorship 
is not strict. 

COMPETITION- 

Approximately 80 percent of the features released in Colombia are Ameri- 
can-made. During the past year there has been a considerable increase in 
the number of British features displayed, and also some increase in the number 
of French, German, and Mexican pictures shown. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- • . . 

Colombian basic copyright law dates from 1886, and subsequent laws do 
not specifically deal with motion pictures. Present copyright laws are con- 
sidered inadequate. Colombia is not a member of the International Convention.' 
The following la.vs and decrees make up Colombian copyright legislation: 

Law 32 of 1886, Decree of 1886. 

Law 57 of 1887, Decree 1226 of 1922. 

Law 104 of 1922, Decree 1708 of 1930. 

PRODUCTION- 

There are no studios in Colombia, production being limited to occasional 
news reels and advertising films. 

TAXES- 

The National Defense Tax of 10 percent on gross receipts of motion- 
picture exhibitions, established by Law 10 of 1932, was modified by Presiden- 
tial Decree effective as of March 1, 1935, as follows: 5 percent on tickets 
up to and including 20 centavos, 6 percent on tickets from 21 centavos to 30 
centavos, 7 percent on tickets from 31 centavos to 40 centavos, 8 percent on 
tickets from 41 centavos to 60 centavos, 10 percent on tickets of over 60 
centavos. 

This reduction represents a saving of about 3.5 percent of the former 
tax, and lowers direct taxes on the motion-picture exhibitor to about 20 per- 
cent as compared to 23.5 percent previous to the recent decree. 

Poster taxes: For one-sheet posters, 0.80 centavos per set of 30; 
for two-sheet posters, 1.60 pesos per set of 30; for three-sheet posters, 
2.40 pesos per set of 30. 



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-63- 



THEATERS- 



There are approximately 250 theaters in Colombia. 



SOUND- 



Of the 250 theaters, 230 are wired for sound motion pictures. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3,272,980 ft. 
14,126 ft. 



$76,114 
$230 



1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3,411,393 ft. 
14,126 ft. 



$77,103 
$230 



» 



COSTA RICA 



LEGISLATION- 

Official exchange control has been in effect since 1932, but in practice 
foreign exchange is readily available. If exchange is available as a result of 
Costa Rican exports to a particular country, first preference is given to 
the utilization of such funds to pay for imports from that country. 

There are no quota or contingent laws in effect or contemplated, nor 
any laws giving other countries preference over American films. 

CENSORSHIP- 

All of the 325 films shown since January last have been censored, of 
which none were rejected. 

COMPETITION- 

The largest competitcrs of American films are Mexican. Of the total 
number of films shown in 1937, 80 percent have been American. American 
films are well received, but at the same time there is a demand for films 
in the Spanish language. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Protection from piracy is supposedly accorded copyrights and foreign 
producers, but, in a recent case, existing legislation was found to be actually 
ineffective for protection against piracy. (Raventos vs. V. Saenz) , 



2670 



-64- 



PRODUCTION- 

There is no domestic film industry in Costa Rica. 

Language "dubbing" in films shown in Costa Rica has not, as yet, gained 
popular approval. Foreign films shown in Costa Rica are not required to be 
"dubbed" with the Spanish language. 

The language of the country is Spanish. 

TAXES- 

Taxation is not excessive. A tax of 5 percent of the gross box-office 
receipts is imposed by the Government. Another tax of 5 percent is imposed 
on the net receipts (income tax). This latter tax applies to practically 
all businesses. Import duties under Item 82 of the Costa Rican Tariff are 
charged at the rate of 1.50 colones ($0.26) per kilo on all films. No ex- 
ception is made in the case of news reels. 

THEATERS- 

There are 39 theaters in Costa Rica, having a total seating capacity of 
23,427. 

The average admission prices in the capital are 60 centimes to 1 colon 
($0.10 to $0.18), and in the Provinces 30 to 60 centimes ($0.05 to $0.10). 

Gross income at .theaters in Costa Rica during the year 1936-37 amounted to 
$196,811.94. 

Films with a definite, serious plot are preferred to musical comedies. 

The total investment in motion-picture theaters in Costa Rica is estimated 
at 3,000,000 colones ($534,759.35). 

American films take approximately two-thirds of the total gross income 
of Costa Rican theaters, or about 736,076 colones ($131,207.84). 

SOUND- 

There are 39 theaters wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 456,937 ft. $6,242 
Negative sound 



1936 

2670 



- Positive sound 
Negative sound 



439,258 ft. $5,316 



-65- 



CUBA 

LEGISLATION- 

There ?.re no laws prohibiting or restricting foreign exchange, nor are 
there any laws giving films of other countries preference over American films. 

No quota or contingent laws are in effect or contemplated. 

At present, there is no legislation which would tend to reduce or prevent 
the distribution of American motion pictures. 

Educational films were exempted from import duty by Decree No. 541, pub- 
lished in the Official Gazette and made effective on February 15, 1937, which 
was enacted in application of the provisions of the "International Convention 
for Facilitating the Circulation of Educational Films", ratified by Cuba on 
April 30, 1936. 

After defining educational films in accordance with article I of the 
international convention, the decree provides for their exemption from im- 
port and export duties and supplementary taxes, etc., and for similar exemption 
for sound-reproduction accessories, provided that the films have been recog- 
nized as educational by the National Commission of Educational Films es- 
tablished by the same decree. Requests for duty-free importation may be made 
by institutions recognized as educational or cultural by the Department of 
Education . 

A bill introduced into the House of Representatives during the year pro- 
vided for the exclusion of children under 12 years of age from motion-picture 
theaters other than those in which only pictures suitable for children are 
shown. The bill provided for the establishment of a commission to pass on 
whether or not films were suitable for children. 

Provision for the establishment of a National Motion Picture Board was 
made in a bill passed by the Cuban Senate on June 2, 1937, and referred to 
the House of Representatives. The function of the Board, according to the 
proposed measure, was to promote the development of a Cuban motion-picture 
industry by providing for the encouragement of local talent and the regulation 
of picture production. The activities of the board were to be financed through 
the sale of a S10G,000 issue of postage stamps. This bill was similar to one 
introduced in the Senate last year. 

CENSORSHIP- 

No films are known to have been rejected during 1937, although minor 
changes in a number of pictures were made at the suggestion of the Film 
Censorship Board. 



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-66- 



Censorship in Cuba is not strict. The censoring function is exercised 
by a Film Censorship Board under the jurisdict.on of the Department of the 
Interior (Gobernacion) , which judges films from synopsis sheets and photo- 
graphs. The Board is empowered to determine whether or not a picture may be 
exhibited and to suggest changes in films to render them suitable for exhibi- 
tion. 

Distributors of news-reel films are no longer being asked to eliminate 
scenes showing salutes of the factions engaged in the Spanish civil war. 

COMPETITION- 

Spanish-language films, produced principally in Mexico, Argentina, and 
Spain, are the largest competitors of American films. French and British 
pictures are the next most important competitors. Competition from German 
films is unimportant. 

From 75 to 80 percent of the films shown are American, and American films 
are generally well received and are preferred to locally-produced films. 
However, certain individual films imported from other courtries may from time 
to time bring a greater gross return than most American pictures. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright Act 1909 by Presidential Proclamation of November 17, 1902, 
extended April 9, 1910, and December 9, 1920. The new Patent and Trade-Mark 
Law of 1936 gives special protection to motion-picture films apart from that 
given under the copyright law. The trade mark of the manufacturer or producer 
must have been registered prior to the application for registration of a film. 
The application must be held by the producer or assignee in Cuba. 

PRODUCTION- 

There was one feature-length film produced in Cuba during 1937. This film 
entitled "La Serpiente Roj a" , was produced by the Royal Advertising News 
Co., Habana, and depicted the exploits of a fictitious Chinese detective 
radio character of great popularity in Cuba. It is reported that the film 
was a great box-office success for a limited period of time. The only other 
films produced in Cuba during 1937 were advertising shorts and news-reel shots.- 

Production facilities are not adequate for the production of feature pic- 
tures, and the industry is not well financed. Production technique is greatly 
inferior to that of American films. 

Although several distributors have tried to introduce American films 
"dubbed" in Spanish, the results have not been successful. Cuban audiences 
apparently prefer to hear actors speak in their own voices rather than hear 



2670 



-67- 



others speak for them, even though the technique is good, the voices similar, 
and the language Spanish. 

Spanish is the predominant language in Cuba, although English is widely 
understood, especially by the more well-to-do classes of the population. 
There is no requirement that foreign films be dubbed in Cuba. 

There is no Government subsidy to encourage the production of motion 
pictures in Cuba. During 1937, as in previous years, there has been con- 
siderable publicity in the periodicals and newspapers ol the island advocating 
the fostering of a domestic motion-picture industry; but to date nothing has 
been actually done toward this end beyond having a bill for the creation of a 
National Motion Picture Board introduced into the Senate. 

TAXES- 

Taxation is not high. Aside from the import duties and minor taxes, it 
amounts to 4^ percent of the gross intake. 

Theaters are required to pay a municipal license tax, a tax of ly percent 
of the gross intake and a tax of 8 percent of the gross profits. Distributors 
are subject to a municipal license tax ranging from $100 to $750 and taxes 
of li percent and 3 percent on the gross rentals. In addition, there is a 
scaled stamp tax on the fact value of contracts signed by exhibitors and 
distributors, ^ percent remittance tax, and a maternity tax of i percent of 
the gross payroll. 

The import duty on motion-picture films prepared for exhibition imported 
into Cuba from the United States is $'''.P0 per net kilo which is 20 percent 
less than the lowest duty applicable to films imported from other countries. 
In addition to the duty, there is a surcharge of 10 pe -cent of the dut^ and 
a consular invoice fee of 2 percent of the f.o.b. value, port of exportation. 

THEATERS- 

The number of theaters in operation in Cuba is about 375, of which 80 
are in the Habana metropolitan area. There are no data as to the total 
seating capacity of the motion-picture theaters in Cuba; but 70,000 would 
be a fairly accurate estimate of the total seating capacity of the theaters 
in the Habana area. The average admission price is $0.10. The first-run 
theaters in Habana charge as much as $0.60 for the better pictures. Numerous 
smaller theaters charge as little as $0.05 per person. 

In order of preference the types of pictures preferred by Cuban audiences 
are: Spectacular action films (films containing some sort of a religious 
appeal are especially well liked) ; musicals, both the spectacular and operetta 
types; drama, including comedies, small musicals, program pictures, etc. 



2670 



Historical romances are well received, and comedy pantomines are very well 
liked. 



The yearly gross income at theaters may be estimated at about $3,000,000. 
Probably about 70 percent of the gross intake is derived from the Habana area. 



SOUND- 



Virtually all of the 375 theaters are equippe^Ji with sound apparatus. 

The chief market for sound apparatus is in the equipping of new theaters as 
these are constructed. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



5.801.007 ft. $115,358 

79.399 ft. $1,321 

5,370,519 ft. $106,580 

64,840 ft. $1,020 



♦ ♦ » 



CZECHOSLOVAKIA 

LEGISLATION- 

Fo reign-exchange control has been exercised in Czechoslovakia since 
October, 1931, and the Czechoslovak National Bank is the administrative body. 
Czechoslovak branches of American motion-picture distributing companies have 
experienced intermittent delay in effecting remittances to their home offices 
because the National Bank does not place remittances of rentals and earnings 
on an equal exchange footing with regular merchandise imports. 



There are no motion picture regulations in force in Czechoslovakia today 
which can be construed as giving other foreign countries official preference 
over American films. Notwithstanding the payment of a high import registration 
fee of 20,000 Czechoslovak crowns* per feature, the local system of registra- 
tion, adopted November 16, 1934, to supplant the former contingent system 
provides basically for a free market. 

Except for transactions concluded by one company which was bound by con- 
tractual relations, no American sound features were sold by any large pro- 
ducers from April 30, 1932, to February 8. 1935. the date on which American 
producers resumed distribution on the local market. 



* One Czechoslovak crown equals $0,035 U. S. currency at the present rate of 
exchange. 



2670 



-6^ 



Negotiations regardins the return of American pictures to the market 
were conducted several times in 1933 and in 1934 without result, owing to 
refusal of the Government to modify existing control. At the end of October 
1934, negotiations were resumed. 

An instruction of the Ministry cf Commerce, published in the Official 
Gazette of Novejiber 16, 19.34, and effective on that date, set forth certain 
new regulations applying to the import of exposed motion-picture films. The 
provisions thereof, with subsequent amendments, were as follows: 

1. Exposed motion pictures may be imported only by individuals, compan- 
ies, or juridical persons who possess a trade license for producing or dealing 
in such films and who comply with the provisions set forth in this instruction, 
provided that upon their own application they are entered in the register of 
importers by the Ministry of Commerce. Import licenses are not transferable 
and will be issued to the exchange which will distribute the respective films 
in the country. 

2. Applications for an import permit are to be submitted through the 
Czechoslovak Association of Film Industry and Trade in Prague. 

3. Each importer must in advance and at his own expense, show the 
picture to the Film Advisory Committee. 

4. Each sound feature film imported into Czechoslovakia and approved 
by the Film Advisory Committee must be entered into the register of imported 
sound feature films, which is kept by the Association of Czechoslovak Motion 
Picture Producers in Prague. 

Imported silent pictures, sound features up to 700 meters in length, and 
nature (scenic), sport, news, and documentary pictures must be entered into 
the register of other imported pictures, kept by the Association of Czechoslo- 
vak Motion Picture Producers in Prague. 

Imported sound industrial advertising films must be entered into the 
register of imported sound industrial films kept by the Association of Czecho- 
rslovak Motion Picture Producers in Prague. 

5 . Entry in the register may be made only when the applicant submits a 
certificate from the Ministry of Commerce showing that there are no objec- 
tions to the import of the picture under consideration. 

6. Only after the importer submits evidence that the picture has been 
entered in the register will the Ministry of Commerce issue to him an import 
permi'c for Customs clearanoe and a certificate designated for the Ministry of 
Interior to be presented when the picture is submitted for censorship. 



2670 



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7. Imports of exposed motion-picture films will be permitted in Czech 
language versions and in the language version of the country of origin. Dub- 
bing of imported films to be shown in Czechoslovakia into another language is 
permitted only in cases when dubbing has first been done in the Czech language. 
All copies of imported films shown in a version of the language spoken by a 
local minority must be provided with superimposed titles in the Czech language. 
The titles must be made in Czechoslovakia. Exceptions from the above pro- 
visions may be granted by the Ministry of Commerce after a hearing before the 
Film Advisory Committee. 

8. Importers of news reels must include, weekly, at least 20 percent of 
the total meterage of quality Czechoslovak sound news and must have ali 
copies of nev;s reels made in that country. 

9. Whoever imports a minimum of five sound feature pictures during a 
12-month period must prove prior to October 1 of each current year that he is 
offering for distribution at least one cultural-propaganda short produced in 
Czechoslovakia in accordance with the suggestions confirmed by the Film Ad- 
visory Committee. A producer of a sound feature picture may be released from 
this obligation following a hearing by the Film Advisory Committee, provided 
said producer's feature contains sufficient cultural subject matter. 

10. A Film Advisory Committee to the Ministry of Commerce is herewith 
established. Besides the chairman its members are: 

(a) A representative of the Ministry of Commerce, 

(b) A representative of the Ministry of Education, 

(c) A representative of the Ministry o^ Foreign Affairs, 

(d) A representative of the Ministry of Finance, 

(e) A representative of the Ministry of National Defense, 

(f) A representative of the Czechoslovak Association of Motion 
Picture Industry and Trade, 

(g) A representative of the Association of Czechoslovak Motion 
Picture Producers, 

(h) A representative of the Central Association of Czechoslovak 
Motion Picture Theater Owners, 

(i) A representative of the Czechoslovak Film Union, 

(j ) A representative of the Czechoslovak Film Company. 

The Minister of Commerce appoints the chairman of the Film Advisory 
Committee, as well as the representatives of the various trade organizations 
upon the respective recommendations of said organizations. 

The representatives of the various Ministries are appointed by the 
respective Minister. 



2670 



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Each representative may have two alternates, their appointment being 
subject to the same provisions applying to the representatives. 

The Minister of Commerce shall at his own discretion call experts to 
participate in the activities of the Film Advisory Committee in an advisory 
capacity. 

11. The Film Advisory Board is to render decisions: 

(a) On questions regarding the regulation of imports of motion 
pictures . 

(b) On what imported pictures should be entered into the register of 
other films, kept by the Czechoslovak Association of Motion 
Picture Producers. 

(c) On questions regarding Czechoslovak film production and its 
promotion. 

Because the new instruction failed to contain a time clause and because 
United States companies considered even the new regime as being discriminatory 
against American pictures in favor of German sound films, they did not return 
to the market, and no further negotiations were carried on until January 14, 
1935, when an agreement was reached with the Czechoslovak authorities. The 
American companies accepted the major points of the new regime in principle, 
as it provided basically for a free market. In return the Americans procured 
a concession which enables them to bring in, without payment of the regular 
20,000 crowns registration fee, 1 picture dubbed in German for every 8 Ameri- 
can sound features imported. The companies distribute the dubbed film in 
sections where English sound features have no market because of German compe- 
tition, i. e. in certain districts specifically designated by the local au- 
thorities where the majority of the population is German. The granting of 
this concession, which was important because it presented to American films 
operating in the market a unique opportunity of amortizing German dubbed films 
which they are obliged to produce in Germany and Austria in order to remain 
in those markets, assured the return of American companies, and they resumed 
distribution on February 8, 1935. 

A total of 16 such dubbed films were brought in under this arrangement 
during 1936, and so far as can be ascertained at this time, 13 were imported 
during the first 10 months of 1937. 

The Czechoslovak Association of Motion Picture Industry and Trade, 
which is the local distributors' association, withdrew its representative from 
the Film Advisory Committee in October, 1937. This action was taken because 
of apparent disagreement between the Association and the Board of certain 
basic questions, particularly on the question of subsidizing local features. 
Local distributors, it is understood, had scheduled production of a consider- 
able number of features with the A-B and other domestic studios and had 



2670 



-72- 



anticipated greater subsidies than the Board stood willing to grant. American 
distributing branches, it will be remembered, stepped out of the Czechoslovak 
Association of Motion Picture Industry and Trade on March 7, 1936, and combined 
themselves into an independent organization known as the Federation of Film 
Import and Trade in the Czechoslovak Republic, because the voting power in the 
Association of the local branches of American companies was not commensurate 
with their importance in the import and distribution trade and therefore they 
could not afford to have the Association speak for them on problems presented 
to it. Back in 1934, when the local film regulations were changed to provide 
for a registration system instead of the former contingent system, the Czecho- 
slovak Association of Motion Picture Industry and Trade was entrusted with the 
keeping of the several registers into which imported pictures were to be in- 
scribed. Because of the fact that this association stepped out of the Film 
Advisory Committee, the maintenance of the registers has been entrusted to the 
Association of Czechoslovak Film Producers. 

A revision of the Czechoslovak direct tax law in July 1936, increased 
the tax on income from franchise charges, patent rights, royalties, inventions, 
etc., accruing to foreign principals from 6 percent to 12 percent. Income on 
rentals accruing to foreign motion-picture companies was not assessed the 
former 6 percent teix, but the local branches of such companies have been in- 
formed unofficially by the Minister of Finance that such income will be as- 
sessed the 12 percent rate. No American branch company has paid these taxes to 
date, and the Film Advisory Board is expected to back up the distributors in 
their endeavors to have the application of the tax to film rentals waived. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Practically speaking, there is a dual system of censorship in Czecho- 
slovakia, the first reviewing body being the Film Advisory Committee (often 
called the Prescreening Commission) which advises the Ministry of Commerce 
whether or not a certain picture should be permitted entry. The second or 
regular censorship is under the Ministry of Interior. 

A total of 300 feature pictures were reviewed by the Prescreening Com- 
mission during 1936, and of this number entry permits were refused 23 American 
sound features, 29 German, 3 British, 3 French, 1 Austrian, and 1 Hungarian. 

The ratios of pictures refused entry to authorized imports for 1936 were: 
United States, 17.7 percent; Germany, 37.2 percent: Great Britain, 25 percent; 
France, 17.6 percent; Austria, 4.5 percent; and Hungary, 12.5 percent. As re- 
gards the ratio of American pictures rejected it should be pointed out that 
only 13 of the 23 pictures refused were products of the 5 American film 
companies maintaining distributing branches in Czechoslovakia and that these 5 
organizations accounted for 108 of the total 130 American features brought 
into Czechoslovakia during 1936. 



2670 



In the same year the Board of Censors of the Ministry of Interior re- 
viewed 327 features and 9 of them were bained, 7 being American and 2 German. 
During the first 10 months of 1937, 243 feature films were passed by the Board 
of Censors. There were 100 features of American origin, of which 13 were Ger- 
man versions. 

Pr&screening and regular censorship are both very strict. Most rejected 
American films are turned down because of alleged "political blunders" or 
"bad social example" . 

COMPETITION- 

Germany is the largest competitor of the United States on the QzechoslpvaK 
market with respect to sound features, followed by Czechoslovak productions. 
A virtual monopoly is enjoyed by American companies in the short comedy field. 

Of the total 318 sound features released by the censors in 1S36, 136 
(42.8 percent of the total) were American, 82 (25.8 percent) German, 31 (9.7 
percent) Czechoslovak, 22 (6.9 percent) Austrian, 19 (6 percent) French, and 
12 (3.8 percent) British, other countries supplying 16 (5 percent). The 
United States supplied 87 percent of all the short (up to 600 meters) comedies 
and 35 percent of all news reels. Preliminary returns for the first 10 
months of 1937 disclose that of the 243 feature pictures passed by the censors, 
100 were American, 57 German, 32 Czechoslovak, and 14 each French and Austrian. 

American films are very well received, and leading American picture 
stars are very popular. A well-made American picture with prominent stars 
is preferred to a domestic production, but a locally produced film has dis- 
tinct preference over a second-rate American feature. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Reciprocal declarations between Czechoslovakia and the United States 
were exchanged April 27, 1927. Citizens of one country are assured full copy- 
right protection in territory of the other country. This went into effect 
March 1, 1927, under United States Copyright Act of March 4, 1909, and Czecho- 
slovak Copyright Law of November 24, 1926, and amendment made thereto in Law of 
April 24, 1936. 

PRODUCTION- 

According to preliminary returns, production of 47 Czechoslovak sound 
feature films (including foreign versions) was completed during the first 
11 months of 1937. It is likely, therefore, that the tentatively scheduled 
production program for 1937 of 54 features may be attained. Censorship figures 
indicate that 32 Czechoslovak features were released for showing in the first 
10 months of 1937, including 1 French and 2 German versions. 



2670 



-74- 



The Czechoslovak Government is assisting domestic film production through 
direct subsidies granted from the proceeds of registration fees collected on 
imported features at a rate of 20,000 crowns per feature and through the 
granting of Government guarantees (since October. 1937) on Czechoslovak motion- 
picture productions up to 50 percent of the calculated cost of such produc- 
tions, provided the total amount of such guarantees does not exceed 10,000,000 
crowns. 

The Association of Czechoslovak Motion Picture Producers, which now 
administers the proceeds of import registration fees, pays to the producers 
of Czechoslovak sound films, within the limits of these funds, a maximum 
subsidy of 210,000 crowns per film under the following conditions, as amended 
. to date: 

(a) The producer is to submit the complete scenario to the 
Film Advisory Committee at least 3 weeks before starting production. 

(b) The Film Advisory Committee, under regulations adopted 
October 27, 1936^ shall classify contemplated Czech feature produc- 
tions into four categories: (1) those which the Committee does not 
recognize and therefore grants no subsidy; (2) those which the com- 
mittee recognizes and accords a subsidy of 70,000 crowns; (3) those 
which the committee recognizes and recommends and accords a subsidy 
of 140,000 crowns; (4) those which the Committee considers of ex- 
ceptional quality and accords a subsidy of 210,000 crowns. 

(c) Upon approval of the scenario by the Film Advisory Com- 
mittee and upon submission of proof by the producer that i reduction 
has been started in a local studio, the Association will pay 70,000 
Czechoslovak crowns to the producer. 

(d) The remainder of whatever subsidy is awarded the producer 
is to be paid to the producer when the finished film is approved by 
the Film Advisory Committee, which may refuse payment in total or in 
part if the quality of the film is not satisfactory. 

(e) Producers of educational or propaganda films approved by 
the Film Advisory Committee will receive a subsidy fixed by the Film 
Advisory Committee. 

Indirectly, the Government assists local production through a law passed 
in 1931 which provides that cinemas must run Czech programs during 8 weeks of 
each calendar year. 

Production facilities are considered more than adequate for the volume 
of domestic features absorbed by the cinemas. Two studios are operating in 
Czechoslovakia, namely, "A-B" and "Foja", the latter having opened in 1937. 



2670 



-75- 



The "Host" studio, which has been in financial difficulties since it was 
opened (and even before) in 1934, is not producing at present. It has pro- 
cured Government guarantees of credits in an amount of 4,100,000 crowns and is 
now negotiating for further Government support. A new limited-liability 
company called "Aktualita" with a capital of 7,000,000 crowns was established 
in May 1937, for the purpose of exploiting the Czechoslovak news-reel field. 
This new venture is meeting with considerable success, and the "National 
Newsreel" is apparently a source of pride to the company. The "Sunfilm" color 
laboratory, likewise opened in 1937, has only a nominal amount of business. 

As a whole, the local film-producing industry is not too well financed. 
An indication of this, aside from the "Host" case, is the fact that domestic 
studios are not undertaking many productions themselves but merely "shooting" 
them for other firms. Thus, out of a tentative domestic production schedule 
for 1937 of 54 features only 3 are "A-B" and "Foja" films, the remaining 
51 being produced for 29 various local distributors. The "A-B" studios 
showed a net profit of 247,000 crowns in 1936, as against 282,000 crowns in 
1S35. 

Techi ique is not comparable with American films. Some of the photography 
is extremely good, but a market limited for most Czech pictures to the local 
population (slightly over 15,000,000) cannot stand the cost of elaborate sets. 

There is no objection to American films "dubbed" in the native language, 
which is the Czech larguage. However, since the "dubbing" process is relative- 
ly costly and the use of the "dubbed" film would be limited to the Czechoslovak 
market, the conventional practice is not to "dub" but to superimpose Czech 
titles. These titles must be made in Czechoslovakia. 

Foreign films need not necessarily be "dubbed" in the country, but the 
regulations provide specifically that "dubbing" of imported films to be shown 
in Czechoslovakia in a language other than the language version of the country 
of origin is permitted only in cases where "dubbing" has first been done in 
the Czech language. Thus, if the distributor of an English-speaking film 
already imported into Czechoslovakia desired to "dub" it into German for 
showing in Czechoslovakia, it would first have to be "dubbed" irto the Czech 
la. guage. 

TAXES- 

Taxes are very high, existing municipal entertainment taxes average 35 
percent of gross receipts in sound theaters and 25 percent in silent theaters. 
The Ministry of Interior has prepared and has had under advisement for a 
considerable period the draft of a law which would lower these rates to 
about 20 percent and 15 percent, respectively, and, in addition, establish 
differential tax rates for films rated according to cultural value. 
2670 



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In addition to these assessments on box-office receipts, cinemas, as 
business enterprises, must pay regular business taxes. For joint-stock com- 
panies and limited liability companies the special profits tax is assessed. 
The basic rate is 9 percent of the net taxable income plus "profitability sur- 
taxes" which vary according to the amount of earnings distributed. Indivi- 
duals ard establishments engaged in business, except companies subject to 
special profits tax, are subject to the general profits tax, the basic rate of 
which is 2.5 percent. In addition, surtaxes ranging as high as 400 percent of 
direct taxes assessed are collected in behalf of municipalities and other 
public corporations. New taxes to be known as "national defense contributions" 
and "extraordinary profits taxes" are now under consideration in Parliament. 

Distributors pay regular business taxes referred to above, as well as 
the general 3 percent turnover tax. Branches of American companies operating 
in this market together with independent distributors buying films abroad may 
find it necessary to pay the 12 percent tax on remittances to foreign princi- 
pals, which have been discussed above. 

Aside from the basic 20,000-crown registration fee which must be paid 
when a feature film is imported, there are about 10 various fees that must be 
paid before the feature reaches the actual distribution stage. On an average 
feature these supplementary charges total about 1,975 crowns. 

THEATERS- 

The last census of Czechoslovak motion-picture theaters, taken at the 
beginnir g of 1937, shows that there are 1,847 heaters (302 showing daily, 
681 two to six times weekly, and 864 once weekly) as against 1,833 on November 
1, 1935, the date of the last previous census ana 1,955 at the close of 1933. 
The total seating capacity is 593,312 persons. 

Motion-picture theater admission prices vary from 1 Czechoslovak crown to 
13 Czechoslovak crowns, the average being about 4 crowns. 

Judged on the basis of audience reaction and theater attendance it may 
be said that big star features, regardless of whether they are comedy or 
drama, are best liked. Taking several pictures all equally cast, motion- 
picture distributors report the following order of preference; (1) adventure 
pictures, (2) comedies, including musical comedies, (3) dramas. 

The gross income at all Czechoslovak cinemas in 1S36 was estimated at 
380,000,000 crowns. 

An accurate figure on the total investment in the local motion-picture 
industry is not obtainable. Reliable observers plape such investments at 
an estimate of 300,000,000 crowns, divided about as follows; Production, 
30,000,000; distribution, 50,000,000; exhibition, 220,000,000. 



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SOUND- 

Of all theaters, 1,608 are wired for sound, representing an increase of 
265 since November 1, 1935, and leaving only 239 houses without sound equip- 
ment. The present potentialities of the market for sound equipment in silent 
theaters is therefore limited and confined to small units. Considerable Ameri- 
can sound equipment is installed in Czechoslovakia, mostly on a rental basis. 
The outlook for new sales depends largely on replacements and possible new 
technical developments in the sound equipment field, 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 1,375,092 ft. $25,012 

Negative sound 31,002 ft. $411 

1S36 - Positive sound 1,946,244 ft. $33,336 

Negative sound 23,2V9 ft. $369 

♦ * * 
DANZIG 

LEGISLATION- 

Cn Ma. 2, 1.35, the Danzig g'.lden was devaluated by 42 percent. This 
v;as foll0'..ed a short time afterward by the introduction of a system for 
the control of foreign-exchange transactions in the Free City. Persons in 
possession of foreign exchange, or coming into possession thereof, can dis- 
pose of it freelj. Hov/ever, before any importation can be made, a permit 
must be obtained from the Office for Supervising Foreign Exchange. Such a 
permit is obligator^' whether payment is to be made in gulden or foreign ex- 
char.g3. For the purchase of foreign exchange with gulden, a permit is also 
necessar;,'. 

There are no laws in Danzig giving other countries preference over 
/.mericar. films. 

Since i.'a^' 13, 1C36, a technical prohibition on the importation of all 
gDcds i:\^o the Danzig -Polish customs territory has been in force. In order 
to effect the er.tr„ of goods into Danzig, formal permission must be obtained, 
tl.rcug'. the Danzig Chamber for Foreign Trade, from the Polish Ministry of 
Ccmmerce, Warsa..-. 

The principal factor determining the distribution of films in Danzig 
is t'..at, accordir.g to those connected with the motion-picture business in 
l£:.zig all of f..e films s;:ov,n in this city are rented from film exchanges 
in G3rma.. -. ihsrefore, the determining factor in the showing of films in 



'a . c 



-78- 



Danzig is the policy adopted in Berlin. There are no film exchanges in Danzig 
nor are motion pictures produced there professionally. 

- CENSORSHIP- 

There were 636 films censored during the year beginning September 30, 
1936, and ending October 1, 1937, none of which were rejected. 

Since all the films coming to Danzig have been accepted previously in 
Germany, the local censoring of films is purely nominal. 

COMPETITION- 

Of the 636 films shown in Danzig during the year (September 30, 1936 - 
October 1, 1937), 506 or 80 percent were German, 84 or 13 percent were Ameri- 
can, 25 or approximately 4 percent were Austrian, and the rest were from other 
countries. Recently American films have been better received. During the 
quarter of July, August, and September, 1937, American films amounted to 18 
percent of the total shown. No films are produced locally. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The copyright laws and relations of Danzig are based on. and are similar 
to, those of Germany. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is no production of films in Danzig. 

German is the predominant language of Danzig, 98 percent of the popula- 
tion being German. Foreign films are usually "d'ibbed" in German in Germany. 

TAXES- 

According to information received from the Danzig Tax Office, the income 
tax in Danzig is higher than in Germany, while the local turnover tax amounts 
to 1.5 percent as compared with 2 percent in Germany, and the trade tax amounts 
to 11.8 percent. 

In addition to the above-mentionad taxes, there is a so-called amusement 
tax of 15 percent per ticket, which may be reduced to 8 percent, depending 
upon the political, moral, or cultural valuo of the films. Deposits made with 
the customs authorities for the entry of films are returned upon their being 
remitted out of the Danzig-Polish customs territory. There are no film dis- 
tributors in Danzig. 



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THEATERS- 

There are 22 motion picture theaters in Danzig, with a total seating 
capacity of 7,763. 

Admission prices vary between 15 and 43 cents. Light musical comedies 
are best liked. 

SOUND- 

Twenty-two theaters are wired for sound. 

* * » 

DENMARK 

LEGISLATIOb^- 

As in other recent years, motion pictures during 1937 were not affected by 
the existing system of control over Denmark's foreign purchases. A new for- 
eign-exchange control law is now being considered by Parliament to take the 
place of the present law, which expires on March 31, 1938. The bill represents 
a maintenance of the existing system of control over Denmark's foreign trade 
and capital movements, although with slight modifications in the application 
of the system. So far as can be ascertained the new law will not operate 
to restrict the importation of motion-picture films. 

The importation of motion-picture films with Danish text has been for- 
bidden by order of the Ministry of Justice. This prohibition is designed to 
protect the two Danish manufacturers of film texts, A/S Nordisk Film Co. and 
Johan Ankerstj erne, both of Copenhagen. 

The motion -picture commission, after spending 4 years investigating con- 
ditions, recently completed its report, which was handed to the Minister of 
Justice. It is planned to use this report, which has not yet been made public, 
as the basis of a new motion-picture law. General dissatisfaction has been 
expressed with the present motion-picture law, and a revision is expected 
early next year. 

Information gathered from the trade points to the following as the three 
main proposals of the report: (1) creation of a special fund to finance 
the production of educational pictures, cultural and travel films and films 
of artistic value, (2) the establishment of a Government film exchange to 
control the production of the above-mentioned type of films as well as to 
supervise the importaiiion of such films, and (3) formation of a motion- 
picture council of seven members, appointed by the Minister of Justice on the 
recommendation of the Minister of Education, to serve as an advisory body to 
the authorities on motion-picture film and cinema matters. 



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Local cinema owners at times are somewhat disturbed by fears of a gradual 
change-over to municipally operated motior-picture theaters. The last occasion 
for these apprehensions was in November when a license to operate a cinema 
was granted to the municipality of Hjorring. Contacts in the trade, however, 
state that they do not anticipate any such revolutionary step. This opinion 
has been confirmed by the Minister of Justice, who issues the licenses. In a 
press interview the Minister was emphatic in his denial that there is any 
trend in the direction of municipally operated houses, 

CENS01-3HIP- 

The Danish Film Censor in the fiscal year 1936-37, ended March 31, 
reviewed a total of 2,460 films (including copies and advertising films) having 
a total length of 1,820,897 meters, as compared with 2,187 films with a tota] 
length of 1,713,120 meters in the preceding year. Of these films 382 were 
feature films (over 1,500 meters), having a total length of 846,555 meters, 
and 265 were copies of features, with a total length of 674,955 meters. The 
year before, 398 feature films and 259 copies were reviewed. The Censor's 
office also reviewed 372 short subjects with a total length of 40,860 meters 
(364 the previous year); 618 news reels, topical films, etc., aggregating 
173,850 meters (566 the previous year;) 153 comics totaling 35,275 meters (113 
the previous year); 369 advertising films totaling 13,787 meters (367 t^e pre- 
vious year); and 301 16-mm films aggregating •^3,585 meters, for the most part 
local news reels. 

Of the 2,460 films of all types (including copies) examined by the censor 
in 1936-37, 1,056, having a total length of 7^0,700 meters, were American; 905 
(of which 369 were advertising films of less than 25 meters), with a total 
length of 338,942 meters, were Danish; 264, aggregating 254,125 meters, were 
German; 79, totaling 105,295 meters, were Swedish; 56, totaling 90,835 meters, 
were French; and 42, totaling 53,245 meters, were English. In the table 
which follows is given a list of the films (including copies) reviewed by the 
censor in 1936-37, classified by country of production: 

N umb er Meters 



United States 


1,056 


920,315 


Denmark 


905* 


338,942 


Germany 


264 


254,175 


Sweden 


79 


105,295 


France 


56 


90.835 


England 


42 


53,245 


Austria 


25 


37.795 


Switzerland 


10 


1,250 


Russia 


7 


6.225 



* Included in this total are 369 advertising films under 25 meters. 



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Number Meters 

Italy 6 1.215 

Norway 4 300 

Czechoslovakia 3 7,280 

Poland 2 3,325 

Netherlands 1 700 

Total 2,460 1,820,897 

The 647 feature films (including copies) reviewed by the Board of Censors 
in 1936 37 were divided as follows by country of production: 



United States 


-332 


Denmark . ... 


•102 


Sweden 


40 


Glermanv 


91 


France 


35 


England 


24 


Austria 


16 


Czechoslovakia 


3 


Russia 


. 3 


Poland 


1 


Total 


....647' 



No silent feature films were exhibited in 1936-37. The screening of 
silent films is limited to the 16-mm news reels, _ some of the advertising 
films, and a few of the shorts. 

No films were rejected by the censor in 1936-37. Ninety -one films (in- 
cluding copies), with a total length of 195,890 meters, were forbidden for 
children, as compared with 86 films and 194,930 meters, respectively, in 1935- 
36. A total of 867 meters was cut from 45 films (including copies) in 1936-37, 
as against 1,427 meters clipped from 48 films in the preceding year. 

All films shown publicly in Denmark must be approved by Statens Film- 
censur (the Government Film Censor), Frederiksholms Kanal 27, Copenhagen, who 

is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice. In general Danish 
censorship is not severe, although careful consideration is given to gangster 

films before they are passed. 

Children under 16 years are not admitted to films forbidden for children. 

Censor fees are 6 ore per meter (1 krone equals 100 ore, about 22 cents) 
for Danish and foreign feature films and for shorts with a plot. News reels 
and advertising films pay 3 ore per meter. 



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COMPETITION- 



Trade contacts state that 211 feature films were released during the 
first 9 months of 1937 as compared with 229 for the comparative period of 
1936. American releases declined in number from 147 to 125. On a percentage 
basis the drop in American leadership was about 4 percent from around 64 per- 
cent in 1936 to about 60 percent in 1937. German and English films also were 
lower both in number and in percentage of the total. French and Swedish pro- 
ducers registered the only gains among the leaders, the first named increasing 
their participation from only 9 films, or 4 percent, in 1936 to 24 pictures, 
or approximately 11 percent, in 1937, while the share in the market of the 
Swedish producers was up from 10 films, or 4 percent, in 1936 to 16 films, or 
almost 8 percent, in 1937. In the table which follows is given a summary of 
the number of feature films released during the first 9 months of 1937 as 
compared with the same period of 1936: 



(9 months) 
1936 1957 



American 147 125 

German 41 23 

English 11 7 

French 9 24 

Swedish 10 16 

Austrian 2 2 

Russian 1 4 

Czechoslovakian - 2 

Japanese - 1 

Hungarian 1 - 

Yugoslavian 1 - 

Danish 6 7 

Total 229 211 



In the calendar year 1936 a total of 309 feature pictures were released, 
as compared with 305 in 1935. 

French films considerably bettered their position in this market in the 
winter of 1936-37, when they changed from pictures received with indifference 
by the public and mistrust by the exhibitors to best-sellers. Most of the 
French successes were films in a lighter vein. The film "La Kermesse Heroique" 
ran for more than 12 weeks at a centrally located theater and is said to have 
brought in a net of aboux 100,000 crowns. German and English films, generally 
speaking, were disappointing. In the opinion of many, the English films were 
poorer than at any time since the advent of the "talkies". The German pictures 
leave the impression that the industry is on a reorganization basis, and actual 
results achieved in the Danish market were few. Russian pictures are shown 
only infrequently and have no popular appeal. Several of the Danish pictures 



2670 



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were quite poor, this past year; some of the theater owners in the provinces, 
the stronghold of domestic films, report a smaller attendance at Danish pic- 
tures and stress the importance of an immediate improvement. At the same time 
other domestic films made a good box-office record. For example, two of the 
Asa pictures drew 225,000 persons each during the first 3| weeks of their 
Copenhagen run. 

The number of film distributors has increased in late years, and at pre- 
sent there are around 32 operating in this market, giving local theater owners 
a wide choice of films. There are six American film distributors, several of 
which import a few European films from time to time. Of the remainder the 
following, all of which are located in Copenhagen, are the most active: 

Na-n a of company F ilms distributed 

Gloria Film A/S American, French, Swedish 

Finlandia Film Finnish 

Gefion Film Swedish, German 

Nordisk Films Kompagni A/S Danish, German 

Aero Film German, French 

Filmaktieselskabet Nordlys .German, Austrian 

Bolvig Film American, French, English, Swedish 

Fotorama Filmbureau A/S French, German, English, Swedish, Italian 

Dansk Svensk Film Swedish 

Skandinavisk Film American, German, French, Czechoslovakian 

Film-Centralen-Palladium A/S Danish, German, Austrian, French, American 

Constantin Films A/S French, English 

Kosmofilm A/S French 

Vald. Skaarup Russian, French, German 

Panther Film English 

Europa Film French 

Fifteen of the distributors, including the six American branches, are 
joined together in Foreningen af Filmsudlej ere i Danmark (Association of 
Film Distributors in Denmark) . 

The Danish film-producing companies distribute their own films. 

Local distributors rent out m.jtion-picture films to first-run distribu- 
tors on a percentage basis amounting to 30 percent of box-office receipts, 
exclusive of tax. Second-run houses pay 25 percent. No guarantee is re- 
quired, and bloc booking is not practiced. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The laws of the country protect copyrights on a reciprocal basis. The 
Nordisk Films Kompagni which control.? the Scandinavian patent rights to the 
so-called "noiseless intensity system" exacts a fee of 350 crowns for each 



2670 



-84- 



picture using that system shown in Denmark from four American companies 
who have signed a special agreement with the Danish company. 

One American company refuses to sign an agreement with Nordisk Films 
Kompagni and continues to import its own re-recorded films. Another American 
company imports a few re-recorded pictures as well as films using the patented 
system for which it pays a special fee of 700 crowns per picture. All other 
companies pay 1,000 crowns per picture. 

PRODUCTION- 

The Government does not subsidize the domestic film industry. A subsidy 
or assistance in the form of exemption from the 40 percent tax on box-office 
receipts has long been advocated by local producers and the question of State 
support has been considered by the motion-picture commission. In the meantime 
three of the Danish film companies have been met part way, as a measure of 
assistance has been yielded through their being granted licenses to operate 
motion-picture theaters. Nordisk Films Kompagni now controls the Paladsteatret 
and its director controls Kinopalaet, while Palladium will open its own theater 
in January in the center of Copenhagen, and Asa Film has been granted a 
license to build a theater in one of the suburbs of Copenhagen. 

There are five motion-picture companies producing feature films. A 
list of the domestic producers follows; 

Filmatelieret Asa A/S, Copenhagen 
Nordisk Films Kompagni, " 
Palladium A/S, " 
Dana Film, " 
Gefion Film, " 

The first three producers own their own studios. The studio owned by 
Nordisk Films Kompagni has three stages and one sound-recording apparatus, 
a Danish Petersen & Poulsen recorder. The Palladium Studio has three stages, 
a Bofa sound system made by Bang & Olufsen of Struer, Denmark, and one sound- 
recording truck. Filmsateli eret Asa A/S has a studio with two stages and an 
American sound-recording system. Dana Film rents the studio of the Nordisk 
Films Kompagni, while Gefion Film uses the Palladium studio. In addition to 
the three studios mentioned above, there is a fourth owned by Fotorama Film- 
bureau A/S, Copenhagen, which is not producing feature motion pictures but is 
specializing in shorts and advertising films. 

Thirteen feature films were produced by the domestic industry in 1937, 
as compared with only 6 in 1936. Five films were produced by Asa, three by 
Nordisk Film Kompagni, three by Palladium, one by Gefion, and one by Dana 
Film, a new company formed in the summer of 1937. Two of the Nordisk Film 
Kompagni productions were cast with Swedish actors, and the outdoor shots 



2670 



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wera takan in Sweden and Lapland. 
Nordisk Film Studio at Copenhagen. 



All the studio scenes were made at the 



The Asa studio was built in 1936. This company has a production schedule 
of from 3 to 5 films a year. It is reported to have a working arrangement 
with Europa Film of Stockholm whereby the Asa films may also be produced with 
Swedish players at the Copenhagen studio. One such film was made by the 
Swedish company in 1937. 

Nine of the pictures were comedies, two were dramas, and one was a 
revue film made up of the 24 best numbers from the various summer shows. 
The length of these Danish films ranged from 2,045 meters to 3,115 meters. 
The average length of a Danish picture is 2,500 meters. The table which 
follows lists the feature films produced by the domestic industry in 1937 
and gives the name of the producing company and the length and type of each 
film. 



Name of film 



Producing 
company 



Length, Type of 
meters film 



En fuldendt Gentleman 

(A Perfect Gentleman) 
Froken Mollers Jubilaem 

(Miss Miller's Jubilee) 
Den kloge Mand 

(The Quack) 
Der var engang en Vicevaert 

(Once There Was a Janitor) 
Alarm 
Laila 

Mille, Marie og Mig 

(Mille, Marie and Me) 

Stavansbaandet 
(Bondage) 

Plat og Krone 

(Head or Tails) 

Incognito 

Kongens Blaa Matroser 

(The Ki.ig's Blue Sailors) 

D3t Bdgyndte Om Bord 
(It Began On Board) 

Cocktail 



Palladium 
Palladium 

Palladium 

Gefion 
Dana 



3,115 Comedy 

2,850 Comedy 

2,610 Drama 

2,950 Comedy 

2,900 Comedy 



Asa 

Asa 

Asa 

Asa 
Asa 

Nordisk Film 2,500 Drama 

Nordisk Film 2,820 Comedy 

Nordisk Film 2,800 Historical 



2,445 Comedy 

2,500 Comedy 

2,800 Comedy 

2,045 Comedy 

2,240 Revue 



In addition to the above, Dansk Film Co. A/S, Copenhagen, made a special 

film for release in connection with the 25th anniversary of the coronation 

of King Christian X. This picture, which was 2,475 meters in length, showed 
a cavalcade of the last 25 years of Danish history. 



-86- 



Fotorama Filmbureau A/S, Copenhagen, is engaged in the production of 
some 10 traffic propaganda films for the Ministry of Justice. A large number 
of copies will be made, as these pictures will be "hown in practically all 
Danish motion-picture theaters before the feature film. They take 5 minutes 
to screen. The Ministry of Justice is empowered to force theater owners to 
exhibit these pictures. 

It is generally held that Denmark should produce at least 20 feature 
films a year. At present only 12 to 15 domestic productions are turned out 
yearly, and they cannot be compared with American, French, German, or English 
films. The local companies do not have the money, manuscripts, or "stars". 
Under these conditions most Danish films cannot be sold in foreign countries. 
Being dependent, therefore, on the rather limited Danish market, the domestic 
companies feel impelled to try to make pictures that appeal to all ages from 
5 to 80 years. The producers therefore predicate their program on rather 
broad comedies, interspersed with a few melodramas. In general they enjoy a 
wide degree of popularity locally because of the language and the personal 
understanding that seems to exist between the public and the actors. For the 
average Danish film fan, attending a domestic film is comparable to looking 
at the family album. But as the novelty of the Danish-made sound film wanes, 
the public has become more critical of the local productions. The press re- 
viewers also are taking a much more severe attitude after several years of 
silence as regards the low standard of output. 

It is stated that the average Danish comedy costs from 100,000 to 15.0,000 
crowns to produce. Salaries paid the players range from 15 crowns to 100 
crowns a day. A supporting player receives from 25 crowns to 50 crowns a day. 
Extras generally are paid 15 crowns. Several of the best-known stars command 
about 10,000 crowns a picture. One of the most pretentious films produced 
locally in recent years cost around 400,000 crowns, but it was filmed jointly 
with a Swedish company and was exhibited in both Denmark and Sweden. 

The two most recent box-office hits of Nordisk Film are reported to 
have grossed around 840,000 crowns each. Of these amounts the Government 
took 40 percent, or 240,000 crowns, in tax, the exhibitors received 30 percent 
of the balance, or 420,000 crowns, while the producer pocketed the remainder, 
or 180,000 crowns. Local producers state that as long as the risk is so great 
and the gain so small it is difficult to improve the quality of Danish films. 

The best seats in the larger motion-picture theaters in Denmark cost 
1.75 crowns, of which amount the Clovernment takes 40 percent in tax, leaving 
a net of 1.25 crowns. The exhibitor pays 30 percent of this sum, or 37 ore, 
to the distributor, who in turn is reported to spend approximately 20 percent 
of his share, or 7 ore, in preparing the film for distribution and in adver- 
tising. The net return to the distributor on the most expensive seats is 30 
ore. This is also said to be what the domestic producers, all of whom have 
their own distributing companies, receive. On an average it is calculated 
that the net income per spectator is 25 ere, On this basis the domestic 



-87- 



producers maintain that if a film costs 150,000 crowns to produce, it must be 
seen by 600,000 people to g3t it "out of the red". 

The language question presents no serious problem in this market. The 
original language with a brief superimposed Danish text at the bottom of 
the picture is preferred. No "dubbed" pictures are shown. 

Possibilities for an increased showing of Danish films in the Swedish 
market have been considerably improved by the acceptance by the director of 
Sver.sk Filmsindustri, which controls 113 motion-picture theaters in Sweden, 

of a place -on the board of directors of Nordisk Films Kompagni. In the past 
the Swedish market has not been very receptive to Danish films. The Petersen 
and Poulsen patents, which are used by the Swedish industry, are said to have 
paved the way for this closer working arrangement. Swedish versions oi 
several of Nordisk Films' best pictures will be made at the company's studio 
at Copenhagen with Swedish actors. During the past several years the Swedish 
company has been financially interested in two of Nordish Films' biggest pro- 
ductions . 

The production schedule of the Danish film industry calls for about 
12 films to be turned out by local studios in 1S38 . The most interesting film 
at present under production, which will be completed early next year, is an 
historical film being made by Nordisk Films Kompagni. The subject treated 
by the film is the emancipation of the Danish peasant from villenage, the 150th 
anniversary of which takes place in 1938. The cost of the project, it is 
said, will exceed 400,000 crowns, making it Denmark's most expensive sound 
film to date. 

TAXES- 

A tax of 40 percent of the box-office receipts is imposed upon the local 
motion-picture industry. Films of special social or educational value may be 
exempted from the tax by the Ministry of Justice. Tax exemption has been 
granted the domestic historical film at present being produced by Nordisk 
Films Kompagni. 

For years Danish producers have fought for such a preference for all 
Danish films. Occasionally it has happened that a domestic film has been 
relieved of the tax burden, but always on the condition that the amount of 
the tax be deducted from the ticket price, thus extending only an indirect 
benefit to the producer. In the present case the producer is permitted to 
collect the customar-^- admission price, and the 40 percent that usually is 
paid to the Government in tax will go to the producer. 

For the fiscal year 1S35-36, ended March 31 (the latest year for which 
statistics are available), the amusement tax on motion-picture theater tickets 
yielded ',',013,133 crowns as compared with 6,491,'i'25 crowns for the preceding 



2670 



-88- 



fiscal year. Of these amounts 3,708,432 crowns was returned by Copenhagen 
motion-picture theaters in 1935-36, as against 3,378,978 crowns in 1934-35. 

Forty-five thousand crowns, or about 0.03 percent of the net box-office 
receipts, is paid annually by the Association of Provincial Motion-Picture 
Theaters to Koda in the form of a license fee for the music accompaniment to 
the sound films. This tax is divided among the various provincial theaters 
as follows: 90 pay 30 crowns; 35 from 30 to 50; 24 from 50 to 75 ; 29 from 75 to 
100; 40 from 100 to 150; 23 from 150 to 200; 18 from 200 to 300; 8 from 300 to 
400; 3 from 400 to 500; and 4 from 500 to 1,000 crowns. The tax on gramophone 
music is paid by the individual theaters direct to the Koda office at Copen- 
hagen. A fee is also paid to Koda for music delivered together with adver- 
tising films, without regard to whether the music is recorded on records or on 
a sound track on the film. 

The sum of 171,250 crowns was paid in 1936-31' by Danish motion-picture 
theaters to the Government in the form of operating licenses. This tax was 
divided among the cinemas as follows: 

Number of theat ers License fe e 



128 


Kr. 0 


55 


150 


23 


300 


33 


500 


93 


800 


14 


1,800 


8 


2,500 


4 


5.000 



The import duty on exposed film is 70 ore per kilogram. 
THEJATERS- 

On April 1, 1937, there were 358 motion-picture theaters in Denmark, 
an increase of 6 houses over the 352 in operation the year before. Only 
some 175 of these theaters give daily performances, and best estimates place 
the number of what might be called active houses at around 320. Forty-four of 
the cinemas are located in Copenhagen, 159 are found in the provincial towns, 
and 175 are situated in the country districts. 

No statistics are available regarding the total seating capacity of 
Danish motion-picture houses. However, an approximation of the total may- 
be gathered from the table set forth below, which lists Dai ish cinemas ac- 
cording to seating capacity and number of yearly performances: 



2670 



-89- 



Number of. theaters 



Seats 



Performances 



128 


Up to 


500 


Up to 151 


55 


II II 


II 


" " 300 


23 


If II 


II 


1. " 400 


33 


II II 


II 


" " 500 


93 


ti 11 


POO 


. " " 850 


14 


II 11 


1,000 


" " 1,200 


8 


II 11 


1,200 


" " 2,000 


4 


Over 


1,200 


Over 2,000 



Greater Copenhagen (including suburbs and Frederiksberg) , with a popula- 
tion of approximately 900,000, had 44 motion-picture theaters on January. 1, 
193.' with a total seating capacity of 27,705 as compared with the same number 
of theaters and 26,BV4 seats the year previous. Of the 44 theaters,. 17 seat 
up to 500 persons, 22 from 500 to 1,000, and 5 over 1,000. The seating capa- 
city of the three largest Copenhagen cinemas is as follov/s:. .v.; 

♦World Cinema 1,856 

Paladsteatret 1,V28 , .; 

Kilo-Palaet 1.244 

* This theater shows motion pictures only during the winter months, as in 
the summer it is taken over by a circus. 

Five new theaters were constructed during 1937, of which three were in 
Copenhagen and two were in the provinces. The seating capacities of the 
three new Copenhagen cinemas are 880, 800, and 500, respectively. A s-ix,th 
new motion-picture house, seati* g 805 persons, was opened in Copenhagen in the 
fall, when a suburban summer revue theater was converted into a winter cinema. 
It is the policy of the authorities to favor the granting of licenses for the 
operation of motion-picture theaters in the suburbs of Copenhagen, and .in 
193,' all the new theaters were opened in those districts. They are all fully 
modern, well equipped, and comfortable and show first-run films. Early in 
1938 Denmark's most modern motion-picture theater, seating 1,500 persons, will 
be opened by Palladium A/S, a local producing company. The theater is cen- 
trally located and has cost about 1,000,000 crowns to erect. 

Approximately 20 of the older theaters were rebuilt or modernized during 
the year. All of the reconstructed theaters were outside of Copenhagen. 
An estimate of the average cost of reconstruction is 30,000 crowns,, making 
the total expended for rebuilding purposes in the neighborhood of 600,000 
crowns. 



If present plans maierialize 10 rew motion-picture theaters will be con- 
structed in greater Copenhagen in 1S38 and 3 will be rebuilt. One of the new 
houses is to be a news-reel theater. .....c 



2670 



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No theaters are owned by foreign motion-picture producers, and there 
are no chain theaters, both such forms of ownership being impossible under 
the provisions of the Danish motion-picture law. 

On the basis of the amusement tax returns it can be calculated that 
total box-office receipts in 1935-36 approximated l''(,533,000 crowns, as com- 
pared with 16,230,000 crowns in the preceding year. Statistics pertaining 
to greater Copenhagen indicate that the steady increase in cinema attendance 
recorded in late years continued through 1936, when ticket sales numbered 
11,361,000 as compared with 11,028,000 in. 1935 and 10,081,000 in 1S34. Evi- 
dence that this trend is uninterrupted in 1S37 can be had from the results 
of ticket sales for the first three quarters of 1937, when 6,715,085 admis- 
sions were paid at Copenhagen theaters as compared with 6,496,932 in the 
January-August period of 1936, a gain of 218,153, or about 3 percent. The 
gross box-office receipts of the 44 motion-picture theaters in greater Copen- 
hagen aggregated 13,24, ,000 crowns in 1936 as against 12,774,000 crowns in 
1935, an increase of not quite 4 percent. During the first. 8 months of 1937 
the gross revenue from ticket sales to the same theaters totaled 8,149,057 
crowns, as compared with 7,697,845 crowns for the like period of 1936, a gain 
of about 6 percent. 

Reports from 264 provincial theaters reveal that the net box office re- 
ceipts (not inclusive of the amusement tax) of 58 houses are less than 5,000 
crowns, while 48 theaters net between 5,000 and 10,000 crowns. This means 
that 106 theaters, or 40 percent of those outside Copenhagen, have net box- 
office receipts of less than 10,000 crowns. Thirty-three theaters are said to 
net from 10,000 to 20,000, 71 between 20,000 and 50,000, 39 between 50,000 and 
100,000, and 15, or 5i percent of the total, over 100 , 000. crowns . 

Prices of admission for adults at the first-run theaters are 1.05 crowns, 
1.40 crowns and 1.75 crowns, and at the second-run houses 70 ore, 1.05 crowns, 
and 1.40 crowns (all prices include a State tax of 40 percent). 

The larger theaters in most cities generally give only two performances 
on week days, at 7.10 and 9.10 p.m. and as many as five shows on Sundays and 
holidays at varying hours. In Copenhagen there are three or four houses 
that run five or six showings daily, beginning with matinees at 2 p.m. In 
case of "hits" the larger theaters sometimes schedule an extra per formance at 
4 p.m. In Copenhagen the number of shows ranges from 16 to 35 per week, 
and in the provincial cities from 3 to 14 a week. Each performance is gener- 
ally about 1 hour and 50 minutes. 

The usual program consists of one feature film together with either a 
cartoon film, a short comedy, or an educational or scenic film. The two last- 
named types are usually shown in conjunction with German feature films. 
News reels are not commonly a part of the program. Advertising films and 
slide advertisements are screened at the beginning of the performance and 



2670 



-91- 



during the intermission in the middle of the show when refreshments are sold. 
The motion-picture program is not supplemented by vaudeville selections. 

There is one news-reel theater in Dsnmark, located in the main railwdjr 
station at Copenhagen. This theater gives a continuous performance from 2 
p.m. to 11 p.m. In addition to news reels, travel, educational, scenic, 
sport, cartoon films, etc., are shown. This theater reports an attendance 
of 552,227, or 1,556 daily, in 1936-37 (ending March 31), as compared with 
553,193, or 1,536, daily in 1935-36. This theater was open 355 days in 1936-37 
and played 3,109 1-hour performances. 

Five small Copenhagen cinemas specialize in showing two full-length ^ilms 
on the ssime program. Very few of these features are first releases. 

Motion-picture programs generally are changed on Monday. Feature films 
usually run one week in the larger theaters. Box-office "hits" are prolonged 
for as long as from 2 to 16 weeks. In 1936 four of the leading Copenhagen 
theaters had only 14, 15, 15, and 19 premiers, respectively, owing to the 
exceptional appeal of the pictures exhibited. During the first 9 months of 
1937 one Copenhagen house has had only 4 premiers, a second only 5, and a 
third and fourth only 8 each. The increased participation of the domestic 
industry also is of interest. One of the Danish films released this year was 
shown simultaneously by nine of the leading Copenhagen theaters. Other Danish 
films have had premieres at 6 or 7 theaters. The domestic films usually have 
"runs" of several weeks at each theater. These factors possibly explain the 
drop in the number of features released from 229 in the first 9 months of 
1936 to 211 for the same period of this year. The erection of new first-run 
theaters tends to counterbalance this trend. 

Biographical pictures, dancing and singing films, detective stories, 
and gangster films are well received and attract large audiences. As respects 
the gangster films it is worth mentioning that they create an unfortunate 
impression of American life. They are also being subjected to an increasingly 
severe censorship. 

A few American colored pictures have been exhibited with good results. 
"Zigeunerprinsessen" (The Gipsy Princess), said to be the first European 
(English) colored film, was shown in September with success. The critics 
wrote that "for the first time the eyes were not tired by the color". 

SOUND- 

Three hundred and forty-eight picture theaters are wired for sound in 
Denmark. There is little prospect of selling original sound equipment, as all 
Danish cinemas of importance are wired and the few and unimportant theaters 
still unwired are not potential buyers. Most of the present business is con- 
fined to service and replacements and a small business in equipping the new 
theaters built each year. 



2670 



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The tjipe of equipment commonly found in local cinema theaters with 
less than 500 seats in the Danish "Bofa", manufactured by the firm Bang 
& Olufsen of Struer, Denmark. Other leading makes are Zeiss Ikon, an Ameri- 
can machine, Bauer, A. E. G., and Philips. 

Three of the five new theaters constructed in 1937 purchased Bang Ic 
Olufsen sound equipment, while A. E. G. and Bauer machines were installed ii. 
the remaining two. Data covering 13 of the 20 or more rebuilt theaters re- 
veals that Bauer equipment was placed in 4 and A. E. G. machines in a like 
number, while Bang & Olufsen wired 3 houses and Zeiss Ikon 2. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 
1936 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 

* * * 
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws or regulations in the Dominican Republic prohibiting 
or restricting foreign exchange. Neither are there any laws or regulations 
which give any country a preference over American films. The legislation 
in force is limited to such as affects censorship and taxation, as will be 
seen under various headings below. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The local censorship board has kept no records of the number of films 
censored, but it is reported that during the year 1937 only one film has been 
rejected. This film was known under the Spanish title "Camino de Perdicion" 
and is understood to have been made by an independent and not weii-known pro- 
ducer, whose name the censorship commission was unable to supply. The film 
was declared to be unfit for minors, and its exhibition was therefore pro- 
hibited. 

In general it may be stated that censorship is not very strict. It is 
not vei'y well organized and is exercised in a rather capricious manner. While 
the chief censorship board is a municipal organization in Ciudad Trujillo, it 
is understood that the educational authorities (national) also exercise certain 
censorship rights which are ill-defined and which these authorities are 
believed to possess by virtue of their general duties to guard over the 



3.835,450 ft. $77,631 

5,494 ft. $273 

4,331,194 ft. $87,211 

101,752 ft. $1,635 



26'.0 



-93- 



morals and education of youth rather than by virtue of any specific law or 
regulation . 

Furthermore, in the interior or Provincial towns the inspectors of 
public education or instruction are understood to exercise a sort of censor- 
ship independent of both the municipal board and the central educational 
authorities at Ciudad Trujillo. Exhibitors state that these Provincial 
authorities frequently act in an arbitrary manner, but apparently no records 
are kept of their decisions and the reasons therefor. It was intimated that 
rejections on the part of the Provincial authorities are invariably based 
on alleged deleterious influence upon the morals of youth. 

The censorship, as it exists at present, is based on a number of muni- 
cipal ordinances and perhaps even more on powers that the censorship au- 
thorities have simply assumed. However, rejections are so few in number that 
exhibitors prefer not to contest the decisions of the boards or educational 
authorities and invariably withdraw the films. 

COMPETITION-. 

No exact data regarding the percentage of American and other films are 
available. Film distributors estimate that at the present time from 75 percent 
to 80 percent of all films shown are American. The chief competitors, which 
account for the remainder, are Mexican, Spanish, Argentine, and British, in 
about that order. 

It is also believed that during the last year or "two the percentage of 
American fiJms shown has declined. This decline is due chiefly to the fact 
that better Spanish-lar.gv.age films have been produced. For years after the 
advent of the talking film, the cinema-going public of the Dominican Republic 
greatly preferred /merican films, because of their superiority. English talk- 
ing fi'.ms, vith legends in Spanish, were readily accepted. But since the 
lang- ag3 of the country is Spanish, it is natural that Spanish talkies should 
be preferred to Er.gMsh, when other features are equal. During the past year 
or t..o a nv.mber of ver., good all-Spanish films have been exhibited, and it is 
not at all improbable that this tendency will increase in direct proportion 
to the increase in the number of really good Spanish films that are made 
available in Spain, in Mexico, or in the Argentine. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

No cop;,'right laws exist which would adequately protect a foreign pro- 
ducer from piracy. 

PRODUCTION- 

There is no film industry in the Dominican Republic and so far as can 
be ascertained, there has never been any effort to start one. 



26,0 



-94- 



There is no objection to American films "dubbed" in the native languag^e, 
which is Spanish. However, it is only natural that Spanish talking pictures 
will have a much wider appeal, provided that they are good from both a techni- 
cal and artistic standpoint. For this reason it has been possible in recent 
years to introduce a larger number of Spanish, Mexican, and Argentine films. 

Spanish is the language of the Dominican Republic. While a large number 
of persons, particularly those in business, have a fair reading knowledge of 
English, it is doubted whether any large number of these people understand 
English well enough to catch the dialogue or text of the picture. 

While there is no regulation, so far as can be ascertained, which re- 
quires that films be "dubbed" in the Spanish languge, both business prudence 
and responsibility toward the public require that they be "dubbed". Failure to 
do so would surely adversely affect patronage. 

Translations of titles are usually very close unless a title is too 
idiomatic to permit its translation. Occasionally, however, the original 
English title is ignored and an entirely new Spanish title is assigned which 
is more expressive to the Spanish mind and which has a greater box-office 
appeal. The "dubbing" of films and changing of titles rarely takes place in 
the Dominican Republic itself. Most fiJms shown are drawn from Puerto Rico, 
where these operations are undertaken to satisfy the requirements of the large 
number of inhabitants of that island who are unfamiliar with the English lan- 
guage. 

TAXES- 

Taxes paid by the motion-picture theaters are relatively high. In the 
first place there are the taxes paid on the theater itself and the operating 
license. Theater owners are compelled to pay a half-yearly tax of 20 cents for 
each seat in the house or for each 16 inches of seating space in the theaters 
that are equipped with benches instead of individual seats. A surtax of 10 
percent of this tax is also paid semiannually, the surtax being allocated to 
the chambers of commerce. The operating license is $25 semiannually, plus 
a surtax of 10 percent. 

An admission tax of 1 cent on tickets costing 20 cents or less, or of 
7 percent of the value of all tickets above 20 cents, must also be paid. 
These admission taxes, which are modifications of the taxes previously exist- 
ing, are effective from January 1, 1938. 

The import tax on films, according to paragraph 870 of the Customs Tariff 
of 1920, is 15 percent ad valorem, and there is also a 15 percent ad valorem 
internal-revenue tax under paragraph 141 of Law 854 of March 13, 1935. In 
practice, however, these taxes are never paid, since all films are imported 
under bond to reexport them within 4 months. Four months affords ample time to 
show a film in all theaters of the country. Practically all films are leased 



2670 



-95- 

from distributors, or companies' representatives, in San Juan, Puerto Rico, 
regardless of the origin of the film. 

THEATERS- 

There are 22 theaters in the Dominican Republic, of which 8 are in Ciudad 
Trujillo, 2 each in La Vega, Moca, Puerto Plata, San Pedro do Macoris, and 
Santiago de los Caballeros, ard one each in Azua, Barahona, La Romana, and 
San Francisco de Macoris. The total seating capacity of these 22 theaters is 
9,370. 

Admission prices vary between 5 cents and 40 cents in Ciudad Trujillo and 
between 5 cents and 30 cents in the provincial towns. These price ranges 
obtain in the various theaters of the cities and towns and do not depend on 
the theater, but on the film that is exhibited. The admission price for the 
first showing of a first-class film in Ciudad Trujillo is 40 cents (on very 
rare occasions 50 cents); in the Provinces it is 30 cents. The admission 
price for the second and subsequent showings at the same or another theater of 
the same town is usually reduced until, just before the film is withdrawn and 
reexported, women in some instances may be admitted free if accompanied by a 
male escort who pays 5 cents. There are no theaters that have a fixed and 
uniform admission price for all performances, nor theaters that have exclusive- 
ly premiere performances. Except for first showings, there is, as a rule, a 
difference in the admission price of men and women, the latter paying 5 or 
10 cents less than the men. 

The film which seems to receive the largest patronage is the spectacular, 
historical show. Musical pieces are next in order. In the third place may 
be put romantic shows with little or no music. Then come news reels and comic 
films. 

No data are available regarding the gross income of the theaters. It is 
believed that the income has increased during the past 2 years, partly be- 
cause several new theaters with modern equipment have been opened and partly 
because several theaters which previously existed have installed new sound 
equipment . 

I ... 

SOUND- 

All of the 22 theaters in the country are wired for sound in some way. 
Only 3 in Ciudad Trujillo (Apolo, Rialto, and Independencia) have good sound 
equipment. Others in Ciudad Trujillo and all in the Provinces are in need of 
new apparatus. The owners, however, will scarcely install new equipment at 
the present time. Some of them are not in a financial position to do so, 
others are unwilling to do so, because the income of the theaters under 
present conditions would not, in their opinion, justify the additional out- 
lay. 



i:670 



-96- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 
Positive sound 
Negative sound 



4,508.303 ft 
7,784 ft 

2,851,650 ft 
2,400 ft 



$13,527 
$275 
$9,321 
$204 



1936 



* * * 



EAST AFRICA 



LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws inimical to American motion-picture interests in this 
market. There are no quota or contingent laws in effect, and none are contem- 
plated. There are no exchange difficulties. 

CENSORSHTP- 

A Film Censorship Board was constituted under the Kenya Stage Plays and 
Cinematograph Exhibitions Ordinance, which became effective on September 23, 
1930. The board v/as granted wide powers over both silent and sound films, 
posters, and advertising matter. 

Films may be approved for public exhibition, refused approval, or ap- 
proved subject to excisiors. Approval may also be subject to a condition that 
the film may be exhibited only to non-Africans. 

There are Censorship Boards at Nairobi, Kenya Colony; Dar-es-Salaam, 
Tanganyika Territory; Kampala, Uganda Protectorate; and Zanzibar, 

In addition to the usual standards under which censorship operates, in 
British East Africa great care is taken not to pass films which directly or in- 
directly hold up the white race to criticism. This policy is followed because 
of the attendance of Indians. On this basis, for example, "Broken Blossoms" 
was refused a permit. Likewise gangster films and "horrendous" pictures fall 
under the ban, as they hold up the white races to criticism. 

The censor bai ned only about 2 percert of the footage submitted. 

COMPETITION- 

Between 70 and 75 percent of the films shown in East Africa are of Ameri- 
can origin, but there has been a decided gain during the past year in the 
popularity of British films, due, doubtless, to the fact that such films have 
shown remarkable improvement during the past year or so. And with the natural 
desire of British colonists to "buy British", it is expected that this growing 
popularity will increase. 



2670 



-97- 



Most of the films shown on this market come from South Africa, though a 
small percentage are secured direct from the United States and Great Britain. 

PRODUCTION- 

Except for special expeditions, such as the wild-animal productions, 
there is no production of motion pictures in this district. 

Films are not "dubbed" in this district. 

But with excellent weather conditions obtaining at least 9 months of 
the year, with clear and rare atmosphere around Nairobi (altitude 5,000- 
7,000 feet) with labor very reasonable, this would make an ideal spot for such 
operations. 

TAXES- 

Taxes are very moderate. 

THEATERS- 

Nairobi has four motion-picture theaters, one of which is closed. In 
this entire district there are the following: 



Country Town Sound 

Kenya Nairobi 4 (1 closed) 

Mombasa 2 

Nakuru 1 

Tanganyika Dar-es-Salaam 2 

Tanga 1 

Uganda Kampala 1 

Jinja 1 

Zanzibar Zanzibar 1 

Total 13 



There is also a traveling motion-picture outfit, eoing from town to 
town on trucks on circuit to halls and hotels in Eldoret, Kitale, Kisumu, and 
Kakamega. 

It is reliably reported that another motion-picture house, equipped for 
sound, will open in a month or so at Kisumu, Kenya. 



2670 



-98- 



The total seating capacity of the theaters in Nairobi is about 2,500, 
while the price of admission averages 3 shillings. Balcony se^ts are' 4 shill- 
ings, with a ^ shilling tax. The tax on seats is between one-sixth and one- 
seventh of the price of the seat. 

SOUND- 

All 13 motion-picture theaters in East Africa are wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1S37 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 
1936 - Positive sound 

Negative sound 

* * * 
ECUADOR 

LEGISLATION- 

During the first 6 months of 1S37, the decree of July 30, 1936, estab- 
lishing the exchange, import, and export control, was still in force and 
greatly handicapped the normal remittance of funds by the ■ distributors of 
films to their principals abroad. Fortunately, the control of exchange and 
exports was completely repealed on July 31, 1937, and since then foreign 
exchange has been bought and sold freely. 

There are in Ecuador no quota or contingent laws inimical to the in- 
terest of American films or any films of foreign nations. There is do adverse 
legislation. 

CENSORSHIP- 

By executive decree of April 30, 1937 (Registro Oficial No, 491, May 17, 
1937), a board of censors was established in the capital of each Province, 
composed of the First Commissioner of National Police or his representative, 
who presides, and two members named by the Ministry of Public Education. These 
Boards of Censors are in charge of the legal control and censorship of every 
motion-picture film to be shown in the theaters or places employed for that 
purpose in the Republic. In order to exhibit a film, a license issued by the 
Board of Censors will be necessary. The showing or projection of police films, 
crime films, and all films which are judged by the Board of Censors to be 
prejudicial to morals, the established public order, and good habits, or to 
advocate radical ideas, is prohibited. Only films produced expressly for the 
purpose, or those that receive special permission of the Board of Censors, may 



247,744 ft. $4,334 
88,767 ft. $1,557 



2670 



-99- 



he shown for children. Unless these requirements are fulfilled, the admission 
to theaters of unaccompanied children under 14 years of age is prohibited. 

It is obligatory upon each motion-picture exhibitor to establish a day 
each week in which he shall project films especially designated for children 
under the age of 14. 

A film which has received the necessary license in Quito or Guayaquil 
is free from censorship in the other Provinces of the Republic. Violation of 
the regulations is punished by a fine of 100 to 500 sucres. 

Although censorship fees were contemplated, thus far no definite decision 
has been made on the subject. The general opinion is, however, that such fees 
will not be established. 

Althoug'i the provisions of the censorship law and its regulations are very 
strict, it is understood that thus far no undue hardships have been suffered 
by exhibitors and that a broad-minded policy is guiding the actions of the 
Board of Censors in Guayaquil as well as in Quito. 

Until Octobei- io, 193, , approximately 34, pictures were censored, and none 
were prohibited nor cut. 

COKPETITION- 

In Ecuador, American pictures for the past few years have met a little 
competition from European, Mexican, and Argentine features. However, unless 
these foreign films present interesting color or are super-productions with 
famous world-known artists, the majority of the Ecuadoran motion-picture 
patrons prefer American films. 

During the past lO-j months approximately 347 films were released in 
Ecuador. It is reported that 303 films, or 87 percent, were of American ori- 
gin; 14 UFA (German) productions; 8 British; and the remainder Mexican and 
Argentine pictures. The American films are supplied by nine well-known Ameri- 
can producers. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Inter-American Copyright Convention at Buenos Aires, August 12, 1910. 

A decree of August 8, 1887, knovm as the law of Authors' and Artists' 
Proprietary Rights (Ley de Propiedad Literaria y Artistica) protects writers 
and artists, but this law is antiquated, and its provisions do not cover the 
rights and protection of film producers and exhibitors. Consequently, the 
laws of Ecuador make it impossible to enforce exclusive rights to films 
by punishing the showing of them by unauthorized concerns, and do not give any 



2670 



-100- 



protection to the rights of producers of films. It is understood, however, 
that each individual film can be registered, and in that way the exclusive 
right to show that particular film in Ecuador can be obtained. 

PRODUCTION- 

There are no studios in Ecuador. Occasionally free-lance photographers 
(chiefly Americans) shoot several thousand feet of scenery for educational 
or travel pictures which are developed abroad. 

There are no restrictions with regard to "dubbed" American films, and it 
is not necessary that foreign films be "dubbed" in this country. In fact, no 
facilities for developing or taking sound films are available in Ecuador. 

The predominant language of the country is Spanish. 

TAXES- 

In accordance with an executive decree of January 30, 1926 (Registro 
Oficial No. 170, February 2, 1926, and No. 322, May 12, 1930), providing for 
municipal taxes, the municipalities are authorized to collect up to 10 percent 
on the gross receipts from the sale of admission tickets to theaters, motion 
pictures, concerts, horse racing, etc. In Guayaquil, this tax is 10 percent; 
in Quito it is 8 percent; and in other cities it ranges from 5 percent to 10 
percent. A tax of 20 centavos for national defense is collected on all 
theater tickets except those for the cheapest seats which are situated in the 
gallery or second balcony. No other taxes are levied. 

THEATERS- 

There are now operating in Ecuador 34 motion-picture theaters, with a 
total seating capacity of 38,600. 

During 1937, four small theaters with a total seating capacity of 2,100 
were closed. Since these theaters were operated by the same circuits con- 
trolling the motion-picture business in those sections it may be regarded as 
merely cutting down overhead expenses on the part of the owners. 

The important development in 1937 was the finishing and official opening 
of the theater "Cadena" in Quito. The new theater is a modern concrete build- 
ing with a seating capacity of 3,000 persons. The equipment is of Dutch manu- 
facture (Phillips) . 

There are at present no new theaters under co- struction. 

The principal circuits are in the cities of Guayaquil and Quito. The 
yearly gross income of the motion-picture theaters is approximately $250,000 to 



2670 



-101- 



$275,000 (United States currency). In proportion it is estimated that box- 
office receipts are about as follows: 



The attendance of motion- picture patrons is subject to seasons. During 
the hot and wet rainy season (January April) Guayaquil and other coast towns 
suffer a seasonal decline in attendance estimated at about 20 percent from 
normal. The best months for the coastal sections of the country are October 
and November. The months of May, June, July, August, September, and December 
are considered normal and good so far as attendance is concerned. Quito and 
other interior cities generally suffer a decline during school vacations 
(August and September) ; the best months for that section of the country are 
May and June. 

During week days the principal theaters have three shows, known under the 
following names: 



On Sundays, right after church, the young folks generally go to morning 
show (11 a.m.) which is called "Vermouth". The Nocturna or evening shows are 
generally attended by families and not by unaccompanied ladies or minor 
children. 

The average admission prices in the first-class theaters for first 
releases are 2 sucres for box and orchestra seats and 40 centavos for the 
gallery. Superfeatures bring in higher box-office receipts, but seldom more 
than 3 sucres is charged for box or orchestra seats and 80 centavos for the 
gallery in the first-class theaters. Pictures are first released in those 
theaters which are patronized by the more well-to-do classes before they are 
shown in other theaters located in suburbs, the majority of which are chiefly 
patronized by the laboring classes. The second and third class theaters charge 
an average of 50 centavos to 1 sucre for orchestra seats and 20 to 30 centavos 
for the gallery. Admission prices for morning and afternoon shows are gener- 
ally lower. In addition to the admission,- theater patrons pay an extra 20 
centavos for box and orchestra seats. This is a Government national-defense 
tax on each ticket. This tax is not included in advertised admission prices 
axid is paid as a surcharge upon buying the ticket. 



Guayaquil theaters 



Bahia & Manta 
All other 



Quito 

Ambato 

Cuenca 



35 percent 
35 percent 
10 percent 
10 percent 
5 percent 
5 percent 



Matinee (hour 3 p.m.) 
Especial (hour 6:15 p.m.) 
Nocturna (hour 9:15 p.m.) 



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Pic+ures are generally first released either in Guayaquil or Qvito in 
the principal theaters before they are shown in the smaller distribution 
centers. 

The favorite types of pictures continue to be super-features, action 
pictures, and musical reviews. Sensational productions remain very popular 
with the poorer classes. Productions in the Spanish language are popular 
when they have interesting color and contain song hits and dances by well- 
known Latin American artists. 

The average motion-picture program consists of a principal feature and 
one or more trailers shown before the actual program commences. It is cus- 
tomary to show first an animated cartoon film or a news reel if available. 
On Sundays and holidays several features are shown during the morning and 
afternoon shows at popular prices. 

Keen competition of the various circuits at times leads to price wars, 
but during 1937 the distributors of films formed a film board and now endeavor 
to cooperate for their mutual interests. 

SOUND- 

All 34 theaters in Ecuador are wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 61,396 ft. $1,042 

Negative sound 1,008 ft. $15 

1936 - Positive sound 33,746 ft. $406 
Negative sound — — 

* * * 
EGYPT 

LEGISLATION- 

The majority of the population of Egyptian nationality is not acquainted 
with foreign languages, and nationalistic propaganda is fostering the de- 
velopment of local sound film production in Arabic. The prejudice against 
foreign-owned theaters, which occupy an important place in the amusement 
field, is reflected by a proposal made by certain Egyptian producers and 
interests allied to the local film industry (who are endeavoring to capitalize 
on the nationalistic feelings) to the Egyptian Government recommending that 
legislation should be enacted requiring all cinemas in Egypt to show a quota of 
Egyptian films in order to encourage the infant Egyptian film industry. 



-103- 



Although the Egyptian Government is favorable to the general policy of aiding 
local industries, i\ is expected that this proposal will not be favorably 
acted upon, as the size of the local production does not warrant such a form 
of assistance. However, the problem of means of encouraging the local film 
industry is being given serious consideration by the Government. 

Private propaganda exists against films produced in Germany and is 
conducted by Je.vs and Jewish sympathizers; an insignificant number of German 
films have been shown in Egypt since the inception of the anti-semitic movement 
in Germany. 

There are no quotas or contingent laws affecting the importation of 
motion-picture films, and American films lead all other foreign films in 
Egypt. 

By decree which appeared in the Journal Officiel No- 54 of May 7, 1936, 
the Egyptian Governme:",t promulgated the International Convention of October 
1333 to facilitate the circulation of educational .films. This decision, it 
is expected, will have a beneficial effect on the introduction of educational 
films in this market. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The ce:".sorship of films in Egypt is regulated by two Ministerial "Arretes" 
— one, sub No. 14, dated August 2, 1921, covering the importation of foreign 
films, ad the other, sub No. 42, of August 22, 1928, on the exportation • of 
domestic films. The intent of the latter regulation is to prevent the showing 
abrcad of films which might be prejudicial to Egyptian nationalistic feelings. 
In this connection several local feature films have been refused approval, for 
export. An insignificant number of American, French, and other motion pic- 
tures imported from abroe.d during the above period were rejected, while- a sub- 
s'-a-.tial a-iount of "cuttings" were made on various productions passed. 

■ Censorship is exercised by a committee formed by experts from various 
Government departments headed by the Director General of the above-mentioned 
departmerit and including the Controller General of Cinema and Theaters and 
Foreign Press, the Controller General of Eastern Press and Publications, 
a delegate from the Ministry of Education, a delegate from the Department 
of Public Security, a representative of the cinema industry, as well as a 
representative of the local press. This committee acts as a. Court of Appeal 
in the decisions made by the Director of Film Censorship in connection with 
productions submitted for banning. It endeavors to carry out its duties 
fairly so as to coordinate the interests of all concerned. 



2670 



-104- 

COMPETITION- 

Films are 76 percent American, 10 percent French, 7 percent British, 
7 percent Egyptian and from all other countries. 

Society dramas and musical comedies with subtitles in French appeal 
to the educated classes of the population, but American "action" films are 
shown successfully also in the so-called "popular-priced" theaters and pro- 
vincial houses. There is a further fairly good demand for shorts and car- 
toons in technicolor as well as short features of an educational character. 
Original versions are preferred. "Dubbed" films are scarcely shown and are 
not necessary since all the theaters are provided with an extra small screen 
placed laterally to the main one on which subtitles are summarized and project- 
ed in the Arabic and the Greek languages. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The mixed tribunals deal with infringements of trade marks, copyrights, 
and patents under the principles of general law and rules of equity. There 
are no specified laws regarding this. 

PRODUCTION- 

Since its establishment in 1927, the Egyptian motion-picture industry 
has made only slight progress despite official encouragement, nationalistic 
propaganda, tariff protection, and the large demand of the ever-increasing 
Arabic-speaking population eager to patronize pictures produced in their 
native language. 

The Studio "Misr", founded about 3 years ago, is furnished with a com- 
plete and up-to-date technical equipment and is financed by the largest Egyp- 
tian financial institution, the "Bank Misr", Cairo, but the other six small 
studios are relatively unimportant from the viewpoint of equipment and in- 
stallation. They are generally poorly financed and operate intermittently, as 
most of the films are made for account of individuals who pool their capital 
as a speculative venture. Although the standard of films produced locally 
does not as a whole compare favorably with foreign productions, they generally 
enjoy long runs in a few metropolitan theaters and all provincial houses in 
E^gj'P't and nearby Arabic-speaking countries. During the 1937-38 season, 
12 Arabic and 3 Greek films have been screened, while 4 or 5 other films are 
(at the time of reporting) in the cutting room, in comparison with 10 films 
produced during the 1936-37 season. 

The difficulties which at present are being experienced by the local 
film industry are the usual shortcomings of an infant industry, such as the 
absence of capable producers and of actors familiar with modern film technique, 
and, of course, the lack of capi+al. 



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Indications are that capital will remain reluctant to participate in 
the nascent industry, which under present conditions can yield only small 
returns. Much progress cannot be expected in the near future unless the 
present system of private film financing which operates at heavy costs to 
borrowers is replaced by adequate assistance from the Government. 

TAXES- 

The amusement tax based on Decree Law No. 85 of 1933, modified by Law 
No. 5 of 1935, imposed on entrance to race meetings, theaters, cinemas, and 
various other forms of sport and entertainment within the limits of Cairo 
city, has been subsequently applied to the cities of Alexandria, Port Said, 
Tantah, and Mansourah (Lower Egvpt) . This tax has been also enforced in the 
towns of Ismailia, Port Fouad, and Suez by Ministerial Arrete No. 37 of 
August IT, 193V, and it is expected that it will be gradually extended to all 
other centers as and when their importance may warrant. The tax is generally 
collected from the public by the manager of the entertainment concern, who is 
responsible for its payment to the Treasury. 

As from January 3, 1£35, it is fixed at 10 percent on all entrance fees 
from P. T. 1 (approx. $0.05) to P. T. 5 (or about $0.25) and then P. T. 1 on 
every P. T. 10 or fraction, so that from P. T. 10 to P. T. 250 the tax is 
10 percent on the next highest even 10. However, from P. T. 250 to P , T. 400 
the tax is 10 percent of the next even 50 and then 10 percent of the next 
even hundred up to and over P. T. 1,000. 

As of May 9, 1935, import duty on developed positive films is L. E. 2.5 
per kilo net plus 10 percent representing custom dues and other auxiliary 
charges, which brings the total to approximately L. E. 3 per kilo net. 

THEATERS- 

There are 101 public theaters in Egypt and 10 military ones for the 
amusement of the British troops stationed there. A limited number of schools 
and private clubs have small cinemas. There is also a theater at the King's 
main residential palace in Cairo which is equipped with sound. Of these about 
25 operate in the open air during the long summer season, while 8 or 10 indoor 
theaters close during the summer months on account of the extreme heat. 
There is only one theater in Egypt which has, so far, been equipped with air- 
conditioning system. The total seating capacity oi the above 101 public 
theaters is roughly estimated at 74,000. 

In the larger cities such as Cairo and Alexandria, where the better 

houses are located, the average admission price is P. T. 4.5 ($0.22), while 

the prevailing average admission price in the popular and provincial houses 
is P. T. 2 (or approx. $0.10). 



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-106- 



SOUND- 



All IQI theaters are wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 



Positive sound 
Negati\ e sound 



1.492.171 ft 
16.000 ft 



$30,428 
$900 



1936 



Positi\e sound 



1.411.828 x't 



$31,436 



Negative sound 



« * » 



EL SALVADOR 



LEGISLATION- 

There is no restriction of foreign exchange. The unit of currency, the 
Colon, has been stabilized at $1 = 2.50 colones (approximately) since November 
1934, nor do other countries have any preference over American films. 

There are no quota laws in effect, and no legislation tending to reduce 
or prevent American distribution of motion pictures is contemplated. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Cer.sorship is very strict, and various pictures have been rejected at 
the request of representatives of foreign Governments. During 1936 and the 
first 9 months of 1937. the National Circuit showed 511 feature pictures to 
the Censorship Board for approval, of which only 3 were rejected. In the 
same period, 312 short features were reviewed and none was rejected. 

COMPETITION- 

Nir.ety percent of the films shown are American. Competition with American 
films is practically nil, as there is no local motion-picture industry. Eng- 
ish, French, German, and Mexican films are exhibited occasionally. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyrights are protected, through the supervision of the Department of 
Public Works. Since there is no local industry, the question of piracy does 
not arise. 

PRODUCTION- 

A few neAfs reels, especially of the Central American Olympic Games, cele- 
brated in San Salvador in March 1935, were produced by local interests, but 



2670 



-10 



were not sjccessfui. Representatives of American nev.s-reel organizations send 
reels at times, such as that of the San Vicente earthquake in 1936. Foreign 
films must be "dubbed" in Spanish, the local language. 



On admissions: 

Tickets 15 to 24 centavos, tax 1 centavo. 
Tickets 25 to 49 centavos, tax 2 centavos. 
Tickets 50 to 99 centavos, tax 3 centavos. 
Tickets 1 colon and over, tax 5 centavos. 
(2-^ centavos equal 1 U. S. cent.) 

Taxes on performances vary with time of performance and locality: Maximum 
12 colones ($4.80); minimum 3.50 colones ($1.40). 



Thirty-one theaters, seating 37,200; average admission price varies 
greatly. A feature usually is shown for $0.40, including, in addition, a 
news reel and a short comedy. 

American films, with the stars speaking English, are preferred; a large 
part of the regular audiences understands English. 



About 2 1' theaters are wired for sound. The National Circuit recently 
purchased new equipment and apparently will be in the market for further 
sound machinery over a period of time, in order to improve the present equip- 
ment . 

All theaters of the private circuit are wired for sound; 16 in all. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



TAXES- 



THEATERS- 



SOUND- 



193 .■ 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



39,138 ft. 
1,235 ft. 



$550 
$90 



1936 



Positive sound 
liegati.e sound 



147,636 ft. 
1,253 ft. 



$1,429 
121 



* * * 



26.0 



-108- 



ESTONIA 

LEGISLATION- 

Transactions in foraign exchange in Estonia are controlled by the Eesti 
Pank (Bank of Estonia) . The control is based on a law effective as of November 
19, 1931. Under its provisions all requests of local importers for the 
grants of foreign exchange are decided upon by the Foreign Exchange Commission 
of the Bank of Estonia, Furthermore, in order to import, local firms must pro- 
cure a license on certain specified commodities, including films since January 
14. 1935. 

American films enjoy equal rights with other foreign film productions 
in Estonia. No preferential laws exist. 

On January 14, 1935, motion-picture films became included in the list of 
commodities requiring import licenses. This was followed by the granting by 
the Estonian Ministry of Economic Affairs of quota allotments to selected film 
exchanges for the importation of film productions during each 12-months period 
ending July 1. The quota requirements do not apply to the importation of short 
films. 

On or about June 20, 1936, the annual quota for the importation of motion- 
picture films into Estonia was fixed at 220 pictures. On September 16 of the 
same year the quota was increased to 230 pictures, and in February 1937 to 
235 pictures. On June 15, 1937, the quota was reduced to .180 films. Under 
this new quota allotment it it estimated that 60 pictures, or one-third 
of the whole, will be American productions. 

Licensed Film Exchanges and Film Import Quotas — Estonia. 



Number of Films 
Permitted to be 
Imported During 
Period June 15, 

Name of Film until Film Import Quotas 
Exchange July 1, 1958 Previous ly in Effec t 



Esto-Film 70 90 

Ars-FUm 31 40 

UKS-Film 31 40 

An American company 16 25 

Para-Film 16 . . 20 

Ed. Thomson & Co 16 20 

Total 180 235 



2670 



-109- 



Regulations published in the RIIGI TEATAJA (Official Gazette) No. 11 of 
February 9, 1937, and in effect as of March 1, 1937, stipulate that of all 
motion-picture films permitted to be imported into Estonia which measure 
more than 1,500 meters in length, only one picture can be included in a night's 
program of local motion-picture theaters. 

The Trade Division of the Estonian Ministry of Economic Affairs has 
announced that it expects to adopt a stricter control of film censorship 
in the future. It is the intention to insure high-quality films only for 
importation into Estonia. For that purpose, it is contemplated that a card 
index will be established indicating on each card the name of the film, the 
country of origin, the price paid, and why purchased or hired. Further 
entries are also contemplated, such as those relating to opinions, comments, 
and criticisms of the films in question. 

CENSORSHIP- 

During the fiscal year ended April 1, 1937, 810 films, or a total length 
of 781,592 meters, were released for exhibition by the Estonian Film Inspec- 
tor. In this total 264 films (32.59 percent), of a total length of 253,751 
meters (32.47 percent), were American productions. Germany's share in the 
total Estonian film imports during the indicated period was 29.02 percent by- 
number and 37.27 percent by length. Other productions released for showing 
were British, Austrian, French, Russian, Italian, Hungarian, Czechoslovak, 
Finnish, and Estonian. 

During the fiscal year ended April 1, 1937, 31 films were rejected 
by the Estonian Film Inspector. The banned films were certain American 
shorts as well as features of American, German, Soviet, Austrian, and British 
production. The rejected films are not included in the 810 which were censored 
for release as previously indicated. 

Requirements for the censorship of motion-picture films in force in 
Estonia are set up in chapter 2 of the Motion-Picture Theater Law of Estonia 
and in series of regulations issued on the basis of this law. 

Paragraph 7 of chapter 2 of the law stipulates that a motion-picture 
film, both in its subject and form, must be socially constructive and educa- 
tional, and that no permission shall be granted to export or import films if 
the latter are likely to endanger public safety and order, are immoral, 
offensive to religions and national ideals, or in any way bear unfavorably 
upon the dignity of the Estonian Republic, its organs and offices, or which 
may affect Estonia's foreign relations. 

Paragraph 10 provides that the control over the export and import of 
motion-picture films shall be exercised by the Ministry of the Interior 
through the medium of the Film Inspector, who shall be appointed by the 
Minister of the- Interior from among the members of the. Film. Board . 



2670 



-no- 



Paragraph 11 of the law stipulates that exclusively scientific and art 
films not intended for display at motion-picture theaters shall be exempted 
from the film-control requirements and that no amusement tax shall be charge- 
able when such films are shown. 

Paragraph 13 of the law require- that all parts, advertising photographs, 
and the written texts of all imported motion-picture films intended for the 
purpose of advertising, shall be passed upon by the Film Inspector. 

Paragraph 18 of the law provides that motion-picture theaters shall be 
under obligation to include in each of their performance programs a loal 
chronicle or news reel, featuring current events in Estonia. 

An amendment to the Language Regulations, published in the RIIGI TEATAJA 
(Official Gazette) No. 21 of March 8, 1935, provides that the written text 
parts of the film, except the introductory explanations as to the cast of the 
picture, must be in the Estonian language only. 

On September 2, 1937, instructions were issued by the Estonian Ministry 
of the Interior intended to clarify sections of the Estonian Motion Picture 
Theater Law which relate to the control over the importation and exportation 
of motion pictures. These instructions are designed to assist the Estonian 
Film Inspector in determining the differentiation between the so-called 
positive and instructional films and such films as may imperil the public 
morals or promote crime, cruelty, games of hazard, exaggerated luxury, and 
indolence • 

As regards the attendance of screen plays by minors, a legend is required 
to appear in advertising announcements each time a film has or has not been 
approved for this purpose. 

CCMPETITION- 

German-made screen plays are the largest competitors of American film 
productions in the Estonian market. During the 12 months ended April 1, 
1937, German film productions censored for release in Estonia represented 
29.02 percent by number and 37.27 percent by length of the total censored 
films. 

During the above-indicated 12-months period, American film productions 
represented 32.59 percent by number and 32.47 percent by length of the total 
films censored for release in Estonia. 

As a rule American screen plays are well received in Estonia regardless 
of whether they are in English or "dubbed" into German. It is believed that 
only 20 to 30 percent of foreign film productions reach Estonia destined for 
reproduction only in Estonia. The others are destined chiefly to the three 
Baltic States. The best-liked American films in the original English are 
those portraying phases of American life, particularly those with musical 
features . 
2670 



-111- 



The local industry is confined at present solely to news-reel releases, 
mostly silent and only in some cases recently furnished with sound and dia- 
logue. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyrights are observed and foreign producers are protected from piracy in 
Estonia under the terms of the Berne Union. 

PRODUCTION- 

During the 12 months ended April 1, 1937, 161 silent film "chronicles" 
(news reels and documentaries) of domestic origin, of a total length of 
33,870 meters, were censored for release in Estonia. The domestic production 
during the period of January 1 until November 5, 1937, consisted of 54 film 
chronicles of a total length of approximately 11,200 meters. In the calendar 
year of 1936, 56 film chronicles and 18 cultural films of a total length of 
14,000 meters were produced. 

The Endowment "Eesti Kultuurfilm" (The Estonian Culture Film) is the 
only licensed film producer in Estonia. It has a ground capital of Ekr. 1,000, 
equipment fund of Ekr. 150,000, and operating capital formed of payments from 
the Film Fund and of State subsidies. 

The Endowment employs a personnel of 14, namely, 1 managing director, 
3 camera men, 3 laboratory assistants, 1 sound engineer, 1 sound mechanic, 
1 music synchronizer, and office clerks. In addition, there are cooperating 
camera men, 2 at Tallinn, 3 at Tartu, and 2 at Parnu, Estonia. The offices and 
laboratory of the Endowment are at 46 Harju tanav, Tallinn, while the studio 
ajid workshops are at 32 Ruutli tanav, Tallinn. 

The production thus far has consisted of 2 chronicles per week, released 
for screen in three and two copies, with a copy for each of the five first-run 
theaters at Tallinn. 

The "Eesti Kultuurfilm" has the following revenue: (1) Receipts of local 
news-reel hire from local motion-picture theaters; (2) receipts from the 
Film Fund; (3) subsidies under the Estonian State budget appropriations; 
(4) receipts from the sale of local film "chronicles" abroad. 

The Film Fund is maintained at the Ministry of the Interior and is made 
up of payments of a tax in the amount of 5 senti per each meter of film 
at the time of first importation into Estonia, and in the amount of 1 sent 
per meter at each subsequent importation. 

Only the producing phase of the domestic motion -picture industry is 
subsidized by the Government in Estonia. The exact amount of such recent 
subsidy is not known, but it is estimated by dealers that, of the total in- 



2670 



-112- 



vestraent of approximately Ekr. 260,000, the Government subsidies cover about 
half. It is also understood that a low-rate and long-term bank loan has 
been recently contracted by the domestic film-producing interests in Estonia. 

^s regards the Motion Picture Film Fund, which is maintained at the 
Ministry of the Interior, it is reported that its account was balanced on 
March 31, 1936, at Ekr. 8,990.00. The Government's subsidy of the domestic 
film production takes place in Estonia through the State budgetary appro- 
priation. However, it is not specifically indicated as such, and hence the 
amount can only be estimated as above. 

The production facilities of the "Eesti Kultuurfilm" appear to be quite 
adequate for making short local silent news reels, and perhaps also local 
sound or synchronized sound chronicles, but en+irely inadequate for the 
production of sound feature films of American standards. 

The domestic Estonian film industry appears to be financed well enough 
to be able to produce regularly local news reels, the showing of which, at the 
rate of not less than 200 meters at a time, is compulsory for the local 
theaters, and to carry on exchange of local film chronicles with foreign 
countries. It is estimated that the annual revenues of the "Eesti Kultuurfilm" 
from the tax on compulsory local news reels may amount to approximately 
Ekr. 20,000; those accruing from censorship fees, to about Ekr. 30,000; and the 
revenues from other fees and charges, to about Ekr. 60,000 — bringing the 
total annval revenues to approximately Ekr. 110,000. The technique of the 
domestic Estonian news reel is fairly good, but still it is a "far cry" from 
that of the American film industry. 

There v.ould be no objection in Estonia to American films 'dubbed" in the 
Estonian langag3. However, one of the chief attractions of American sound 
films in Estonia is the fact that they can be heard in English, which language 
is very popular with the Estonians, and particularly with the Estonian youth. 
The State and predominant language is Estonian, which is understood and 
spoken by all racial minorities (Germans, Russians, Swedes, and Jews) in the 
country . 

No regulations exist which relate to "dubbing" of foreign films. Sound 
films in any foreign language ran be reproduced in Estonia, except that the 
legsnds on a film must appear in the Estonian language. It is prohibited, 
however, to import film inscriptions prepared in the Estonian language by 
foreign producers. American films "dubbed" in German are occasionally shown 
in Estonia. 

TAXES- 

Taxes imposed upon theaters, distributors and upon importers. 



2670 



-113- 



a. Taxes and other expenses as paid by motion-picture theaters. 

1. Tax for the display .of compulsory local news reel, per week:. 

As paid by first-run theaters, Ekr. 100. 
As paid by second-run theaters, Ekr. 50. 
As paid by third-run theaters, Ekr. 20. 

2. Amusement tax: 

Motion -picture theaters at Tallinn, 15 in all, pay a tax of Ekr. 
90,000 annually. At the city of Tartu this tax is charged at 18 per- 
cent, at the city of Valga at 12 percent, and at the city of Viljandi 
at 15 percent of the total gross box-office receipts. It is esti- 
mated that the total amount of money paid on amusement tax annually.: 
by all motion-picture theaters of Estonia (58 houses in all) is Ekr. 
210,000. Of this tax 10 percent is deducted for the Estonian Red 
Cross, and 10 percent for the Culture Capital Fund. . . 

3. Trade license tax, payable annually: 

For license of the first category, Ekr. 475. 
-For license of the second category, Ekr. 125. 

4. Tax on net profit: 

Usually 12 percent of gross box-office receipts are allowed for. 
the net profit. For exa.niple, a theater having yearly gross box- 
office receipts of Ekr. 100,000 pays this tax at the rate of Ekr. 
1,200 per annum. 

5 . Income tax : . . . ;. 

This tax is payable by the owner of a motion-picture theater and 
corresponds approximately to the tax payable on net profit. ;j 

6. Turnover tax: . . j 
This tax is not payable by motion-picture theaters. 

7. Film rentals: 

Usually 25 to 40 percent of the total annual gross box office, 
receipts are payable on film rentals. . ;.; 



2670 



-114- 



8. Advertising fees: 

Advertising expenses of motion-picture theaters represent usu- 
ally 3 to 10 percent of the total annual gross box-office receipts. 

9. Lighting costs: 

Approximately 8 percent of the total annual gross box-office 
receipts are paid on cost of electrical lighting. 

10. Personnel hire: 

Expenses on personnel hire represent 7 to 10 percent of the 
total gross box-office receipts, annually. 

11. Fire insurance: 

Approximately 1 percent of the gross box-office receipts are 
paid on fire insurance, 

12. Room rentals: 

Most of the motion-picture theaters in Estonia are operated in 
hired rooms. Rentals usually represent 10 to 12 percent of the 
gross box-office receipts, annually. 

13. Sundry expenditures are believed not to exceed 1 percent of the 
total gross box-office receipts. 

b. Taxes are paid by importers-distributors. 

1. Import duty: 

Motion-picture films are dutiable in Estonia at Ekr. 3 per kilo- 
gram, according to stipulations of paragraph 169, subsidivion 4b of 
the Estonian Import Tariff. For importation the Government im- 
port license is required. 

2. Control and registration tax (censorship tax): 

This tax on motion-pic rui-e films is chargeable per each meter 
length, as follows: At the time of the first importation of the 
film, 5 senti; at the time of the second and all subsequent impor- 
tations of same film, 1 sent. 

The rates on exclusively scientific, art, and technical films, 
for display, outside of motion-picture theaters, are 1 sent and \ 
sent, respectively. 



2670 



-115- 



This tax is computed on the basis of the data relating to the 
length of films as contained in the shipping documents accompanying 
the imported motion-picture films; if in doubt, the Film Inspector 
shall have the right to check the data relating to the length of 
films. 

Motion-picture films which are not permitted to be imported 
shall be liable to taxation at one-quarter of a sent per each meter 
length, for control expenses. 

The tax, in case of a foreign-made motion-picture film, shall 
be payable at the time of the importation of such films into Estonia 
when applying for the grant of the import license, and, in the case 
of films produced in Estonia, at the time of the presentation of such 
films for registration; in both cases the tax is payable by the 
applicant to the account of the Motion Picture Film Fund at the 
Ministry of the Interior. 

3. Turnover tax: 

This tax is payable by the importers-distributors at the rate of 
2 percent of the turnover. 

4. Trade license tax: 

In order to import, local film distributors are required to 
possess a trade license of the first category. The tax on licenses 
of this kind is chargeable at Ekr. 475 per annum. 

5. Tax on net profit; . 

Usually IS percent of the total annual gross receipts of film 
exchanges are allowed for net profit. The tax thereon varies ac- 
cording to the amount set aside as net profit. 

6. Income tax: 

Income tax is payable by persons operating film exchanges and 
varies according to the declared income. 

7. In addition to the above listed taxes the local film distribu- 
tors (exchanges) usually bear all expenses connected with the prepar- 
ation of Estonian "inscriptions" on imported motion-picture films. 

It is generally believed that the taxation of the Estonian 
motion-picture industry is rather high. 



2670 



-116- 



THEATERS- 

The total number of motion-picture theaters regularly in operation in 
Estonia is 58. 

The total seating capacity of the 58 motion-picture theaters in Estonia 
is estimated at approximately 17,000. The average admission price for the 
58 theaters is 35 senti. The best- liked films are Ame.ican plays with musical 
features. 

It is estimated that the total yearly gross box-office receipts of all 
of the 58 motion-picture theaters of Estonia are in the neighborhood of Ekr. 
1,600,000, of which approximately one-half represents the income of the 
first-run houses. 

SOUND- 

The 58 theaters in operation in Estonia are all wired for sound; there 
are no unwired motion -picture theaters in Estonia. New sound equipment is 
purchased mostly for replacing out-of-date apparatus. At present only one 
motion-picture theater, the "Capital" at Parnu, with 460 seats, is under- 
stood to be in the market for new sound equipment. Most of the recent re- 
placements have been filled by the German Klangfilm equipment, which costs 
from Ekr. 3.000 to Ekr. 8,000. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 313,338 ft. $6,245 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 143,731 ft. $2,298 
Negative sound 

» ♦ » 

FINLAND 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no legislation in Finland restricting the importation of motion- 
picture films. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The cento rship of motion-picture films is provided for by three decrees 
issued by .he Gove.-n.nent on Ojtober 30, 1335. The first decree itemizes the 
types of fi'.ms whioh shall not be approved for exhibition. The second decree 



2670 



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provides for the appointment, by the Ministry of Education, of a Government 
Film Censorship Bureau (in Finnish, Valtion Filmitarkastamo) comprising one 
film censor and three associates who are charged with reviewing films intended 
to be exhibited publicly and stipulating the class of amusement taxes appli- 
cable when the particular film is exhibited. All expenses of the Censorship 
Bureau are borne by the Finnish Cinema Association! in Finnish, Suomen Bio- 
graafilitto) . The third decree provides for the formation of a Government 
Film Commission (in Finnish, Valtion Filmilautskunts) of five persons appointed 
by the Ministry of Education to render final judgment, at the request of the 
owner of the film and at the owner's expense, on any film prohibited by the 
Censorship Bureau from being exhibited. 

During 1936 a total of 1,005 films were censored, of which 337 were 
"features" and 668 "shorts". Of these 24 (including 17 American) "features", 
as well as 3 (including 2 American) "shorts" were rejected. 

Censorship of films is not considered, strict. 
COMPETITION- 

Of the feature-length films reviewed during 1936, 58 percent were Ameri- 
can, 13 percent German, and 8 percent French. As regards "shorts", 58 per- 
cent were American, 19 percent Finnish, and 12 percent German. 

It is reported that a Finnish feature film has a box-office value equal 
to two or three imported films. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright laws were enacted in Finland on June 3, 1927, and modified 
by the law of January 31, 1930. Finland entered into reciprocal copyright 
relations with the United States on December 8, 1934, effective January 1, 
1929. On April 1, 1928, Finland became a member of the Berne copyright con- 
vention of November 13, 1908. 

PRODUCTION- 

In 1936, there were produced in Finland 10 "features" and 128 "shorts". 
It is reported that at least 14 "features" will be produced in 1937. 

So far as is known, no imported films have been "dubbed" in Finnish, 
the language of practically 90 percent of the population of Finland. 

TAXES- 

According to the laws of December 28, 1929, and of December 21, 1932, 
effective January 15, 1933, films exhibited in Finland are subjected to 
2670 



-118- 



'.he following taxation: (a) Educational and domestically produced films, 
tax free; (b) art films, 15 percent of admission charge; and (c) other films, 
3? oercent of admission charge. 

If a minimum of 200 meters of domestically produced film is exhibited 
at a performance, the tax shall be reduced by 5 percent. In practice, there- 
fore, exhibitions of films in the art class are taxed 10 percent and other 
imported films 25 percent, as 200 meters of Finnish film are usually shown at 
every performance. 

Imported films are dutiable at 34 marks per kilogram under Item No. 462 
of the Customs Tariff. At the present time 1 mark is equal to $0,022. 

THEATERS- 

There are 265 motion-picture theaters in Finland at present, of whi;h 
16 were opened this year. Included in the total are 10 ambulatory theaters. 

The total seating capacity of motion-picture theaters is approximately 
V5,000. 

Admission prices range from 6 to 12 marks ($0,132 to $0,264) for ordinary 
seats. The maximv.m price is paid at first-run theaters in Helsinki. 

SCUND- 

All 265 motion-picture theaters, including ambulatory theaters, are 
wired for the showing of sound films. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

193,' - Positive sound 862,581 ft. $16,274 
Negative sound 

1S36 - Positive sound 849,863 ft. $20,204 

Negative sound 14,200 ft. $300 

* * * 
FRENCH OCEANIA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws in French Oceania prohibiting foreign exchange. Other 
than a preferential tariff in favor of French films, there are no laws giving 
other countries preference over American films. Films produced in France 
pay an ad valorem duty of 24 percent, while those of other countries pay 36j 

2670 



L 



-119- 



percent. At the present time there are no quota or contingent laws in effect, 
and so far as can be ascertained none are contemplated. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Eighty films have bean censored during 1937. Fifteen were rejected, 9 
of which were American. The films rejected were gangster and French Foreign 
Legion pictures. The censorship is very strict on pictures dealing with 
gamgster and communistic subjects or anything that might lower the prestige of 
the French people in the eyes of the natives. 

COMPETITION- 

Only Americain and French films are shown in the consular district of 
Papeete, Tahiti. During the period under discussion 40 percent of the films 
shown were American. The American films are received through a New Zealand 
exchange, and since the. regular mail. boats sailing between New Zealand and the 
United Stages, calling at Papeete en route, were taken off the run about a year 
ago and replaced by cargo vessels calling at irregular intervals, the per- 
centage of French films has increased. The manager of the local motion- 
picture theater states that American films a'-e preferred by the natives and 
that the decrease in the number shown is due to the .lack of transportation 
facilities. 

COPYRIGHT. RELATIONS- 

The copyright laws of French are applied in French Oceania. 
PRODUCTION- 

No domestic films are produced. In past years several American companies 
have taken motion pictures on the island of Tahiti, but in May, 1936, an of- 
ficial decree was published which provided that motion-picture films made in 
the colony cannot be exported without authorization by the Governor, which 
authorization is given upon the advice of the local cesorship board, before 
whom the films must be projected. It is stated in the decree that this regu- 
lation is not applied if the pictures are taken with amateur machines using 
films less than a hundred meters long. Since the aforementioned date there 
have been no professional motion pictures made locally. 

In 1933 a law was passed providing that within 6 months from the date 
thereof all motion pictures shown in French Oceania must bear the titles and 
captions in the French language, that pictures could be shown with captions in 
other languages provided the same also appeared in French.. An appeal from this 
decree was made to the authorities in France. The mati-er has never been 
settled, and, pending a final ruling, pictures continue to be exhibited with 
English captions only, the permission being renewed every 6 months by the 
local government. 

2670 



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French is the official language in the colony, and most of the natives in 
and around Papeete speak French; however, Tahitian is the predominant language. 



TAXES- 



Taxation is not high. The annual license fee for operating the local 
theater is 1,000 francs, which, at the present rate of exchange of 30 francs to 
the dollar, amounts to about $33. An additional tax, known as the "poor 
tax", of 20 francs (SO. 66) is also assessed for each performance. The question 
of import duty was discussed in the opening paragraph of this report. 



THEATERS- 



The "Theater Moderne" at Papeete, Tahiti, is the only motion-picture 
theater being operated in French Oceania at the present time. It has a 
seating capacity of 800. Performances are given every Sunday, Tuesday, Thurs- 
day, and Saturday evenings. The prices of admission are as follows: 



Sunday 4.00 - 3.00 - 2.00 French francs 

Tuesday 3.00 - 1.00 

Thursday 4.00 - 3.00 - 2.00 
Saturday 8.00 - 6.00 - 4.00 



Musical comedies, comedies, animated cartoons, and cowboy pictures, 
especially the last-named, are best liked by the natives. Some of the cowboy 
films, which were made 15 years or more ago, have been purchased by the 
theater and are shown over and over again. Practically all of the pictures 
presented are from 5 to 20 years old. When a silent picture is shown, a 
native interpreter stands in the balcony and translates the captions into 
Tahitian. Only one performance, consisting of a news reel (always old), a 
two-reel comedy, and a feature picture is given in an evening. 

SOUND- 



The "Theatre Modern" is wired for sound, but the equipment is not of the 
latest type. It is doubtful, however, whether the manager would be interested 
at the present time in purchasing more modern equipment. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



19,026 ft. $238 



33,199 ft. $303 
36,000 ft. $2,500 



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« 



-121- 



FRENCH WEST INDIES 

LEGISLATION- 

So far as can be ascertained, there was no adverse film agitation in this 
market during the year. 

CENSORSHIP- 

There appears to be no censorship practiced in this colony, although by 
decree of the President of Frence, dated May. 16, 1935, and published in the 
Journal Officiel of Martinique on pages 405, .406,. and 407 pf the issue of 
June 15, 1935, there is established a censorship of films and a commission 
composed of the Secretary General of the colony, or his delegate; the Prosecu- 
tor of the colony or his delegate; a representative of the Commandant of the 
troops; a rep esentative of the Chief of Public Instruction; and the President 
of an organi7 tlon known as the "Syndicat d ' Initiative" . There is no record 
extant of an --ims being rejected, and children of all ages are admitted to 
theaters at any time there is a showing. 

COMPETITION- 

French and American films. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

French laws apply. 
PRODUCTION- 

There is no production in Martinique or the island colony of Guadeloupe. 
TAXES- 

Moderate; vary according to locality, city, and town. 
THEATERS- 

There are 15 cinemas in Martinique, with an estimated seating capacity 
of 8,700. These are located in the following cities: Fort-de-France 5, 
Francois 1, St. Pierre 1, Ste. Marie 1, Trinite 1, Lamentin 1, Vauclin 1, 
Riviere Pilote 1, Lorrain 1, Basse-Pointe 1, Precheur 1. All theaters have 
two or three showings a week, and all but two are properly wired for sound. 
Admission prices in the cities range from 1 to 10 francs and in the smaller 
towns and villages from 3 to 6 francs (a franc is equal to $0,034 American 
Currency.) . . In the cities and larger towns where prices of admission are 
higher, the program consists of one news reel and one feature picture. Sunday 



2670 



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nights when there is an increase in the prices a short comedy is included. 
In the low-price villages only one picture is shown. Feature pictures are 
shown twice, usually at the 6 p.m. showing and again at the 9 p.m. performance. 
In the villages a picture is shown once only, after which it is sent to Fort-. 
de-France and returned to the distributor. 

Favorite type of picture: It would appear that any picture is acceptable 
just so long as French is used, the accepted language of the island. American 
films "dubbed" in French are not objected to by the theatergoers. The amount 
of the tax on each admission is included in the cost of the ticket, and it 
varies according to the locality an-d the city and town. 

The foregoing remarks concerning Martinique apply equally to the industry 
as established in Guadeloupe with the following exceptions; There are two 
motion-picture houses, similar to those established in Martinique, operating 
in Pointe-a-Pitre, and two in Basse-Terre. All are equipped for sound. It 
is assumed that each town and village on the island has at least one place 
where films are shown. 

SOUND- 

There are 15 theaters wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 149,298 ft. $4,494 
Negative sound — 

1936 - Positive sound 88,927 ft. $1,692 
Negative sound 

* * * 

GERMANY 

LEGISLATION- 

The entire German film industry is now subject to • Government control 
under the direct supervision of the Ministry of Propaganda. This control 
includes financial support, credit facilities through the Film Kredit Bank.- 
as well as assistance through other means, such as propaganda, etc. Subsidies 
are paid partially from the proceeds of the amusement tax and partially 
from other sources. The net receipts Trom contingent licenses are distributed 
among German film exporters, but the sums involved are not important. In 
the absence of the budget or other figures, it is impossible to estimate 
the total of Government financial assistance to the industry. 

2670 



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The importation of foreign films into Germany is regulated on the basis 
of annual contingents. The German Film Contingent Decree of July 15, 1930. 
expired on June 30, 1936, and was replaced by an enabling act of July 1, 1936, 
which empowered the Minister of Propaganda to establish the conditions under 
which foreign films might be imported. This was effected by the Decree con- 
cerning the Exhibition of Foreign Films, of July 12, 1936. Under this decree 
the number of permits which may be issued for the importation of foreign 
feature sound films was set at 105. Of these, 60 may be nontransferable 
licenses issued to German distributors in proportion to the number of films 
distributed by them; 30 may be transferable "export permits" issued to German 
film exporters in proportion to the number of films exported; 15 are reserved 
for the free disposal of the Ministry of Propaganda. The license fee is set at 
RM (Reichsmarks ) 10,000, which is reduced in proportion to expenditures in 
Germany for "dubbing", etc. Only the second group (export permits) are of 
practical interest to the American industry. 

This decree also includes a provision to the effect that "permits" 
may be refused in the case of films submitted by producers who persist in 
issuing films "whose tendency or effect is injurious to German prestige 
or which have been produced in a state in which the distribution of German 
films is hampered by impeding restrictions." This restriction applies also 
to "films in which actors participate who have previously appeared in pictures 
detrimental to German prestige". The definition of what may be considered as 
"injurious to German prestige" and th » application of this restriction is left 
to the Ministry of Propaganda. In view of the fact that the German authori- 
ties are convinced that the American companies, through "impeding restric- 
tions", are responsible for the failure of German films in America and that, 
furthermore, the regulations are applied in accordance with official "Aryan" 
principles, the effect is to keep imports of American films at a strict mini- 
mum necessary to supplement the insufficient German production of feature 
films. 

Although no formal preference is given other foreign films as against 
American, in actual practice certain other countries are favored. Thus there 
is an actual preference in favor of the production of countries with which 
Germany has compensation agreements or "cooperation agreements". Questions 
of political propaganda also unquestionably enter into the picture and largely 
determine the allocation of the licenses at the disposal of the Ministry of 
Propaganda. 

By the decree of August 6, 1937, the permission of the Reich Film Chamber 
is required for the establishment of any new enterprise for the production, 
distribution, preparation, or performance of motion-picture films. The 
president of the Chamber is empowered to grant such permission if he considers 
the enterprise necessary from the standpoint of the German film industry and 
if he is assured of the financial soundness of the concern and of its capacity 
for satisfactory management and production. 



2670 



-124- 



CENSORSHIP- 

American films coming into Germanjr are subject to the approval first 
of the Contingent Office (Kontingentstelle) and subsequently of the Board of 
Censors (Zensurstelle) . The former permits or disallows the entry of the 
film only on the basis of the personnel concerned in its production and dis- 
tribution. The Board of Censors reviews the film itself, approves or rejects 
it, requires cuts and alterations, etc. The "dubbed" German text must also be 
approved by the Censors. 

During the season 1936-37, the Board of Censors passed 165 long feature 
films, of which 96 were of German, 36 of American, and 33 of other foreign 
origin. The Board rejected 5 films, 3 being American, 1 French, and 1 Aus- 
trian. These statistics of rejections, however, are misleading because they 
do not take into account the far larger number of films disallowed by the 
Contingent Office before reaching the Board of Censors. 



While the regulations governing the censorship are in themselves not 
unduly severe, they are so elastic as to give the Board a fairly free hand to 
prevent the admission of any films against which there might be (from their 
point of view) any sort of objection. Reasons for rejection are usually 
rather vaguely phrased, as "artistically inferior", "offensive to Natio.nal 
Socialist feeling", etc. Other considerations are sometimes mentioned, for 
example, "reflecting against German prestige", "detrimental to the honor of 
the German army", "racially offensive", etc. As compared to such motives for 
rejection, moral considerations are of secondary importance. 



COMPETITION- 

The principal foreign competitors of American films are the French and 
Austrian productions. The following table shows the nationality of films 
exhibited in Germany in 1935 and 1936: 



Country of \ 1935 I 195 6 

Origin \ Number | Percent 1 l ength (m) j Number 1 Pe rcent 1 l ength (m) 

I Long feature films (over 1,000 meters) 



Germany 


i 92 


1 48 


2 1 


230.688 


111 


i 60 


6 i 


274,518 


United States. .. 


1 


1 21 


5 1 


43,756 


33 


i 18 


0 i 


74,508 


France 


1 


1 8 


4 1 


39,327 


11 


1 6 


0 1 


26,105 


Austria 


1 ^'^ 


1 8 


9 1 


41,351 


17 


1 9 


3 j 


■ 42,301 


All others 


\ 25 


1 13 


•0 1 


58,614 


11 


1 6 


1 


25,649 


Total 


t 191 


r 

1 100 


0 i 


413,736 


183 


1 

1 100 


1 

0 


443,081 



' ' •'■ • 

27 0 



-125. 



Country of | 1935 _| 1956 

OriRin j N umbe r ] Pe rcent | L ength (m) | Numb er | Pe rcent | Le ngth (m) 

1 Short feature films (less than 1,000 meters) 

Germany ...| 41 ] 87.2 | 23,547 | 90 | 95.7 | 49,094 

United States j 6 \ 12.8 | 3,240 \ 3 | 3.2 j 2,059 
Others I — | I 1 I 1.1 I 478 



Total 1 47 I 100.0 \ 26,787 ] 94 | 100.0 | 51,631 



American films are generally well received in Germany and, in the larger 
cities especially, are often preferred to German films. In Berlin American 
films have broken records for length of run in first-run theaters. In the 
smaller towns, because of the press campaign against foreign (and particularly 
against American) films, the reception is not always so favorable. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The interests of the author and producer are fully protected under German 
law. Recommendations, however, have been made with a view to a better ad- 
justment of existing law to the peculiar problems of film production and to 
National Socialist conceptions. According to these recommendations only the 
author of the film story would be entitled to copyright, but the producer 
would be protected under the "right of exploitation" (Verwertungsrecht ) . 
Legislation to this effect has not yet been enacted, depending somewhat upon 
similar action in other countries. 

PRODUCTION- 

For the 1936-37 season, 153 long features (i. e., over 1,000 meters 
in length) were announced, of which 112 were completed and passed by the 
Board of Censors. For the 1937-38 season, 125 long features have been an- 
nounced. German film production for the calendar years 1935 and 1936 was as 
follows: 



Type of film 


1935 


1 1936 


Number 1 Length (m) 


1 Number 1 Length (m) 


Features : 






Long 


921 230,688 


1 lllj 274,518 


Short 


41 1 23,547 


1 90 1 49,094 


Non-theatrical films 


1,165 361,747 


1 1,306 389,727 


Total 


1,298| 615,982 


1 1,507| 713,339 



2670 



-126-' 



German requirements for long feature films have been estimated at 200 to 
220 annually. 

Educational films for school use are produced and distributed by the 
National Educational Fila Bureau, which was established in 1936. This Bureau 
has so far produced some 300 narrow-gauge films, of which about 100,000 copies 
have been made and distributed. 

The organization of the German film industry under the control and 
direction of the Ministry of Propaganda has now been made complete. This 
has led to the elimination of financially weak and poorly equipped film 
concerns, either through liquidation or consolidation. Production facilities 
are now generally adequate and there is no difficulty in financing approved 
projects. 

Production tecnnique, though on the average of high standard, probably 
does not reach the quality of the best American productions. 

There are no objections to the "dubbing" of American films in German, 
though, particularly in conversation pictures, it is often difficult satis- 
factorily to adjust the language to the tempo of American dialog. Most 
American pictures shown in first-class Berlin theaters retain the original 
dialogue with the addition of German captions. In the Provinces complete 
German text is usual. 

"Dubbing" of films for local exhibition must be done in Germany, but a 
deduction in proportion to the cost is allowed from the license fee. 

TAXES ■ 

The amusement tax amounts nominally to 15 percent of the admission 
fee and is usually absorbed by the film renter. As reductions are allowed 
for ap- roved films, amounting in exceptional cases to the entire amount 
of the tax, the actual percentage paid is considerably less than the nominal 
tax. The fact that an approved culture film must be shown at every performance 
automatically reduces the tax at least to 12 percent. During the past year 
amusement- tax payments averaged 8-? percent of entrance receipts. Total 
receipts from amusement tax for 1935-36 were RM 17,000,000 and for 1936-37 
they are estimated at RM 20,000,000. Except for the import contingent fees, 
film companies are subject only to the usual taxes imposed on German indus-- 
trial enterprises — that is, income, turnover, and corporation taxes. Import 
duties are insignificant, amounting to RM 2,000 per 100 kilograms for posi- 
tives, developed or undeveloped. Developed negatives are free of duty. 



2670 



-127- 



THEATERS- 



According to the latest census of the Reich Film Chamber there are 
5,302 film theaters in Germany, of which 2,306 are in daily operation. These 
figures apply only to commercially operated cinemas and do not include places 
where films are shown irregularly for special purposes without admission 
charge. By the Decree of August 6, 1937, no new enterprise intended for the 
production, distribution, preparation, or exhibition of films may be es- 
tablished without the permission of the Reich Film Chamber. 

The seating capacity of German film theaters is given by the above 
census as 1,943,049, of which 1,196,900 seats are in theaters operating daily. 
A later estimate places the total at about 2,000,000. The average seating 
capacity of all film theaters is 366; of those in daily operation, 512. 
The average admission price is RM 0.75. 

German audiences show no marked preference for particular types of 
pictures. There has apparently been some decline in the popularity of period 
and musical films. 

The gross income of German film theaters for the 1936-37 season was 
RM 273,000,000 as compared with RM 228,000,000 in the preceding season. 

No satisfactory estimate of capital investment in the German film indus- 
try is available, but the total is probably in the neighborhood of RM 500,000,- 
000, or about RM 250 per cinema seat. 



All German theaters listed in the census of the Reich Film Chamber are 
sound-equipped. Apparatus used is exclusively of German manufacture and 
under present circumstances there is no opportunity for the sale of American 
equipment . 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



SOUND- 



1937 



Positive sound 



916,768 ft 
53,56^ ft 



$29 , 042 
$3,627 



Negative sound 



1936 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



3,2,771 ft 
55,560 ft 



$8,839 
$1,789 



* * * 



-128- 



FRANCE 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws in France controlling or prohibiting the movement 
of funds into or out of France. And there are no laws in France giving films 
from other countries or those produced in France preference over American 
films. The Franco-American Trade Agreement includes a clause safeguarding 
American films from such discriminatory action, and, as this agreement is 
still in effect, American films continue to be so protected. 

The French film quota regulations for the film year July 1, 1937, • to 
June 30, 1938, were published on June 24, 1937, and contain the following 
provisions : 

"Article I - The present decree will be effective from July 1, 1937, 
to June 30, 1938. 

"Article II - With the reservation of the restrictions mentioned below, 
the importation and presentation in France of films of foreign origin is 
unrestricted. 

"Foreign films are subject to the same regime as films produced in 
France, particularly as concerns the application of censorship by the Film 
Control Service. 

"Article III - 'dubbed films of more than 900 meters, of foreign origin, 

may not be shown in public in France except within the limit of 94 films 
per semester and under the following conditions: 

"1. Dubbing must have been effected in studios situated on French 
territory, within a period of 4 months from the data the request was filed, 
certified by the payment of the required tax. 

"2. These films must be presented to the public at the beginning of the 
presentation as 'dubbed films' with the title in the original language, its 
exact translation, and eventually the title under which the film is presented 
and with the indication of the artists interpreting the visual part and the 
names of the artists interpreting the spoken parts. Furthermore, mention must 
be made of the country of origin and the district in which the dubbing has been 
effected. 

"3. For films regularly inscribed before July 1, 1937, and which have not 
received a visa as a result of the exhaustion of the contingent for the pre- 
ceding decree valid from July 1, 1936, to June 30, 1937, the 4-months delay 
will begin to operate only from July 1, 1937. 



2670 



-129^ 



"Article IV - For films of all kinds, originating in foreign countries 
where the exploitation of French films is submitted to restrictions, the public 
showing in France will be subordinate to agreements with the interested 
governments . 

"Article V - With the reservation of the application of Article IV, ori- 
ginal films in a foreign language, with the exception of the animated car- 
toons, may not be shown in public in more than 5 theaters in the Department of 
the Seine and 10 theaters in the other Departments, but not more than a maximum 
of 2 theaters per Department. 

"Derogations from this limitation may be accorded by the Minister of Na- 
tional Education. 

"Article VI - Non-observance of any one of the above provisions will 
cause the refusal or withdrawal of a visa. 

"Article VII - The Prime f.'inister, the Minister of the Interior, the 
fi'inister of Foreign Affairs, the !.'ir.ister of National Economy, the Minister of 
Commerce, and the Minister of National Education are entrusted with the execu- 
tion of the present decree." 

The above provisions are unchanged from those in effect during the pre- 
ceding film year despite the strenuous efforts of local producers to effect 
more stringent import control, distribution, and exhibition quotas. 

Since the Franco-American Trade Agreement went into effect there have 
teen continual efforts on the part of French interests to circumvent the film 
clause of the Franco-American Trade Agreement and destroy the protection that 
clause provides for the American films. 

Both publicly and before the Parliamentary Film Commission which con- 
ducted an investigation this year, certain interests, opposed to the American 
film industry, have advocated the denunciation of the film clauses in the 
present /greement and have suggested that the only way to get around it would 
be to limit film programs in France to one single feature. It is the general 
belief of these people that with the limitation of programs to one single 
feature film the American dubbed films will be eliminated from the French 
market. The American dubbed films form the first part of the majority of the 
cinema programs in the provinces. The revenue from American dubbed films form 
the bulk of the revenue from American films in France. 

At the present time, it is understood that a film bill, known as the 
Zay bill, is being prepared by the Ministry of National Education. According 
to the cinema trade press, this bill will provide for cooperative control 
and operation of the cinema industry; this would be along the lines of that 
existing in Germany and Italy but would be even more centralized and would 



26V0 



-130- 



parallel more closely the Government control of the U. S. S. R. According to 
the trade press, the new bill will include sections providing for the practical 
nationalization of the film industry. 

Insofar as the American industry is concerned, if the proposed bill 
is as reported there is no doubt that the present operation of the American 
companies in France will be made most difficult. 

According to the trade press, the bill is said to include the following: 

1. Precensorship- 

A cinema control commission would be named by the Minister of National 
Education, and this commission would first review all films to see whether they 
are worthy of being presented to the censors. A measure similar to this has 
been previously proposed. The cinema control commission would include the 
French film producers, authors, scenario writers, journalists, film critics, 
writers, etc. 

2. Export visas- 

This measure is proposed to prevent the exportation of French films which 
are not considered worthy of being shown abroad. It is intended to prevent 
the exportation of rather "light" French films which in some countries are 
considered as immoral and as reflecting on the morals and prestige of France. 

3. Dubbing tax- 

A dubbing tax up to 25 francs per meter might be instituted. According 
to trade reports this measure would be included in the bill and, if adopted, 
would be enforced should the Franco-American Trade Agreement be denounced. 
Such a tax would increase the overhead charges of releasing American dubbed 
films by a very large percentage. 

4. Central film syndicate- 

The bill recommends that all trade syndicates be grouped in one central 
syndicate including representatives of the C. G. T. (General Confederation of 
Labor) . 

The board of directors of this central syndicate would include two 
representatives for each of the four employers' syndicates (producers, dis- 
tributors, exhibitors, and technical industries), two representatives of 
the C. G. T., two representatives of the Government named by the Prime Minis- 
ter, who would have the right of initiative and the right to veto. 



26ro 



-131- 



5. Central cinema commission- 

If the industry should refuse to form a central film syndicate as out- 
lined above, the Government would form a central cinema commission including 
one member of each of the employers' groups, four members representing art; 
ists, employees, and worknen, one member representing the Prime Minister, and 
one member each for half a dozen different Ministries. 

Apparently this group would direct and control practically every phase 
of Operation in the film industry. 

6. Arbitration committee- 

An arbitration committee would be formed, including representatives of 
various Government agencies and of the film industry as well as some private 
individuals, and would handle not only conflicts in the industry but also all 
questions concerning the organization of the film market. 

7. A central collecting agency- 

A central collecting agency would control all monies in the film industry 
and collect all revenues from the rslease of films in the cinemas. It would 
be an organization in the form of a stock company, yet submitted to the con- 
trol of the Government. It would collect information about every producer, 
distributor, and exhibitor. It would centralize all contracts for all films 
and execute thea, It would, as a matter of fact, replace completely the 
distributors as they are now constituted. In the future, if this measure is 
adopted, distributors would be nothing more or less than receiving and trans- 
mitting agents. 

This agency would subtract from the revenue of all films the amount of 
money which is considered necessary for its operation, use some of the money 
for the subsidy of the production of French films, and distribute the remainder 
to the interested parties. 

From the accounts of the trade press, it would appear that the decisions 
of these proposed dictatorial bodies, based on ideas from Italy, Germany, 
and Russia, would be obligatory oa everybody in the film industry, whether 
a member of a syndicate or not. 

In addition, it is rumored that in the new bill there will be measures 
providing for the limited use of non-flam films of 35-mm width, the limitation 
of double programs as covered in the early part of this article, and a measure 
providing that French cinemas must show a certain number of French documentary 
and propaganda films each year. 



2 670 



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CENSORSHIP- 

Official statistics for the whole year 1937 are not available, but the 
following were visaed during the period January 1 to September 30: 

86 films in the French language. 
10 French films with French commentary. 
149 foreign films dubbed into French. 
10 foreign films produced abroad in the French language. 
48 German films in German. 
2 German films with commentary in German. 
1 German sound film. 
5 German films in German language. 
153 American films in English language. 

1 American film with commentary in English. 

4 Austrian films in German language. 

1 Egyptian film in Arab. 

7 Spanish films in Spanish. 

1 Spanish film with French commentary . 

1 Hungarian film in German. 

2 Italian films in Italian. 

2 Japanese films in Japanese language. 

1 silent Norwegian film. 

13 Russian films in Russian. 

1 Russian film with French commentary. 

1 Swiss film in German. 

1 Swiss film with French commentary. 

1 silent Swiss film. 

1 Czech film in German. 

20 English films in English. 

1 Arab film in Arabian. 

TOTAL: 523 big films. 
Dubbed films censored from January 1, 1937, to November 23, 1937: 



German 14 

American 140 

Spanish 2 

English 15 

Austrian 1 

Russian 3 

Italian 3 

Hungarian 2 

Polish 1 

Czech 1. 



182 

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It should be noted that many films in this last list have been counted 
Lwice, because they have been counted when they were visaed in the original 
language and they were also listed when they were visaed in the dubbed version. 

The following table gives statistics of the number of dubbed films visaed 
in France, by semesters, from the second semester of 1934 until November 23, 
1937. (It will be recalled that the quota law provides that only 94 dubbed 
films may be visaed per semester or a total of 187 per year. The cinema year 
is considered as running from July 1 to the following June 30.) 



Dubbed Films Visaed in France. 





1 Second 


First 


Second 


First 


Second 


First 


Second 


Origin of 


semester 


semester 


semester 


semester 


semester 


semester 


semester to 


film 


1934 


1935 


1935 


1936 


1936 


1937 


Nov. 23, 1937 


American 


75 


67 


77 


70 


71 


66 


74 


German 


1 
J. 


7 


6 


4 


6 ' 


7 


7 


English 


5 


11 1 


7 


8 1 


14 1 


6 


9 


Austrian 




3 1 


2 i 


4 1 


4 1 


1 1 




Czech 


1 1 








1 1 


1 




Danish 


1 




1 1 


2 1 








Kungariein ... 




3 1 


1 






1 1 


1 


Italian 


2 1 


3 1 


3 






2 1 


1 


Polish 








1 1 






1 


Russian 




2 1 






3 1 


2 1 


1 


Spanish | 




1 1 








2 1 




Swiss 1 








1 1 








Total 1 


85 ! 


97 1 


97 1 


90 1 


99 1 


88 


94 



No films are known to have been rejected definitely in the past year in 
France, although several were held up temporarily. The censors report that no 
American films were rejected during the year, although there was some delay in 
passing two or three on political grounds. 

The censors were slow during the year in passing films including scenes 
of violence, in view of the strained atmosphere in France during the early 
part of the year. 

Censors have occasionally feared that if scenes including violence were 
passed and shown in the cinemas in France they would incite violence in the 
audience. It is interesting to note that when such films have. been shown 
there is no record of such demonstrations. 



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Censorship in France is rather liberal and is primarily political. Cen- 
sors rarely ban films definitely, although they often request cuts. 

Below is given, in translation, a circular on film censorship, signed by 
Edmond See, head of the French censorship board. This circular was inter- 
preted in film circles as an indication that the French censorship board would 
become more strict. It is reported, however, that the circular in question 
does not mean a change in censorship methods but is merely formulating prin- 
ciples of the film censors under which they have been operating but which 
have never been written. 

On the whole, the French people do not favor strict film censorship. 

(Translation) 

"From the Ministry of National Education 
From the Department of Fine Arts 
From the Film Censor Board 

Palais-Royal, October 25, 1937 

From: The Director of the Film Censor Board 

To: The Producers, Distributors, and Exhibitors of Films 

"In accordance v/ith instructions from my superiors, I have the honor to 
communicate to you the decisions mentioned hereafter, pertaining to the 
production of films. 

"A. In future visas will be absolutely refused by the Commission of Film 
Censorship for: 

"1. Films having a tendency to ridicule the Army or capable of diminish- 
ing its prestige. 

"2. Films liable to shock the national sentiments of foreigners and 
thereby bring about diplomatic incidents. 

"3. Films showing armed attacks (hold-ups), burglaries with housebreak- 
ing, and any similar criminal attempts which might have injurious influence on 
the minds of youths. 

"B. Visas will only exceptionally be granted for: 

"1. War or spy films, which, for some time, have had a tendency to in- 
crease. 



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"2. All films based on military or police stories other than those 
mentioned above. 

"For these categories of production for films relative to National De- 
fense, great State institutions, French or foreign high officials and for any 
other which you should deem necessary to submit to me, you will kindly consult 
me before proceeding to produce the film and communicate to me, for examina- 
tion, the detailed scenario of the film proposed. 

"I take this opportunity to remind you that by the terms of article 4 of 
the decree of May 7, 1936: 'Films must be submitted to the censors at least 
8 full days before trade presentation to the public' 

"On account of the requirements of the service this measure will be very 
strictly applied without exception beginning November 1, 1937. (Sgd) . Ed- 
mond See . " 

COMPETITION- 

On the whole the French people are beginning to prefer their own films 
in view of the marked improvement in French production during the past year, 
in which several notable successes have been released in France. American 
films continue to enjoy a decided preference over English and German films. 
At the present time German films arouse very little interest in France. 

There are two types of releases in France of American films: 

(a) Releases in the original version in approximately 25 cinemas. 

(b) Releases in the dubbed version, which are sold throughout France. 

Original versions of our films may be shown only in 5 cinemas in Paris 
and 10 in the provinces. In the provinces there is very little demand for 
original versions. The cinemas which specialize in original versions show 
American films mostly. Approximately 60 percent of all the original ver- 
sions of foreign films are American films, and undoubtedly a larger percentage 
of the total business in original versions of foreign films is done with Ameri- 
can films. 

A better picture of the general release of films throughout France may be 
obtained from the comparison of release of dubbed foreign films and French 
films. Dubbed foreign films may be sold freely throughout the country in the 
same way as French films are sold. 

The total French production for the year 1937 was 121 films, and the total 
number of dubbed films which have been visaed during the year was 182, making 
a total of 303 films which were theoretically on distribution throughout 
France. 



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-136- 

Approximately 75 percent of the films dubbed each year are American 
films. American dubbed films make up approximately 45 percent of all films 
released throughout France. 

These figures and percentages refer solely to the number of films and not 
to playing time. It is impossible to obtain complete statistics of the playing 
time given over to American films in the cinemas of France each year. A great 
many of the American dubbed films are shown on double feature programs in the 
suburban and provincial cinemas. 

American films are very well received and liked by the French public, 
but it is doubtful whether they are preferred to the well-executed domestic 
films. The French would appear to prefer first of all their own good films, 
and second the American films. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

* France adheres to the Berne Convention, and film producers who conform 
to the requirements of the Convention by simultaneous "publication" in one of 
the countries which are members of the Berne Union are protected. 

PRODUCTION- 

As indicated above, French production for the year totaled 121 films. 
French production facilities appear to be quite adequate, and from well- 
informed sources it is reported that present French technique compares favor- 
ably with that of American films. 

The Government does not directly subsidize the French motion-picture 
industry. It has granted small sums to producers of educational films and, 
more recently, to the producer of an entertainment film relative to the 
Navy. This was done more or less as propaganda. 

The Government is directly interested in the Gaumont Franco Film Aubert, 
known here as G. F. F. A. The Banque Nationale de Credit, which failed several 
years ago, had advanced more than 200 million francs to the G. F. F. A., which 
in turn went into the hands of the receiver. The Government, through the 
Bank of France, took over the csseXs of the Banque Nationale de Credit and 
thus obtained the control of the G. F. F. A. films. There is an active ele- 
ment in France, including the C. G. T. (General Confederation of Labor) which 
desires the Government to operate the G. F. F. A, directly as the first step 
to a nationalization of the film industry. At the present time, the Govern- 
ment names the administrators of the company. 

II is expected that, in order to keep the company operating (for it is 
continuously losing money), the present legislators will grant an important 
appropriation to the G. F. F. A, 



2670 



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At the present time, French banks are reluctant to discount film-producer 
paper because the Bank of France will not discount these notes. There have 
been numerous financial scandals in the French industry, due, for the most 
part, to the influx of film producers from Central and near-Eastern Europe. 

During the past 18 months. English insurance companies have been handling 
the financing of a large. part of the French film production. From all reports 
it appears that the representatives of these English insurance companies 
have helped to put some order into the business of the French producers. There 
has been, however, some strain in reimbursing these loans made in pounds, 
following the several devaluations of the franc. 

In general there is no objection to American films "dubbed" in French. 
However, there is a clientele which prefers foreign films in the original 
version and it is to this clientele that the 25 cinemas which specialize 
in this type of film cater. The total of this business in the original 
version is estimated at about 3. percent of the total business of all the 
cinemas in France, 

The public of the neighborhood and provincial houses prefer the "dubbed" 
versions to the original versions. In any case the law prevents the showing 
of each original version in more than 5 cinemas in Paris and 10 in the pro- 
vinces, and of foreign "dubbed" films, to be shown in France, must be "dubbed" 
in France. 

French, of course, is the predominant language. 
TAXES- 

Cinema taxation m France is very high. Cinema theaters are taxed any- 
where from 10 percent to nearly 23 percent of their total gross revenue. 
In addition to the numerous regular business taxes, including a very high 
"patente" tax and special taxes on publicity posters, distributors pay un- 
usually high taxes, including a 2 percent turnover tax on every rental as 
well as an additional 8 percent "production" tax on the cost of prints. 
The:^ are likewise taxed on posters and must pay numerous other special taxes. 

Import duties are relatively high, and to them must be added what is in 
effect an import duty, namely, tl.e cost of "dubbing", for as already stated, 
an American film in its original version may not be shown in more than 5 cine- 
mas in Paris and 10 in the provinces. 

The theater tax decree of July 25, 1935, (*) is still in effect. 



As published on pp. 11-72, "Review of Foreign Film Markets during 1836". 



2670 



-138- 



Article 3 of this decree provided that municipalities of over 110,000 
population (16 in France) might reduce the "poor tax", but did not say that-: 
the poor taxes must be reduced. This was the result of many years' fight- 
of the cinema exhibitors against the tax. 

The poor tax on the cinemas of Paris was reduced from 10 percent to 
8.75 percent, beginning March 28, 1937. (1) It is the first time since, 
the French Revolution that there has been a reduction in the poor tax, which,- 
in principle, is assessed on all amusements and which has been 10 percent 
since its imposition. 

Special taxes on cinemas (including poor and State taxes) total in Paris 
per year about 70,000,000 francs and for the remainder of France 110,000,000 
francs, making an estimated total of 180,000,000 francs. 

One of the highest taxes paid by exhibitors is the so-called "patente"- 
or license tax, Exhibitors have long pointed out that theaters are favored 
over cinemas in this respect. An example is given of a theater which as a 
legitimate theater paid a "patente" of 1,400 francs a year and when it was 
transformed into a cinema, the "patente" was between 15,000 and 16,000 francs. 

The following table shows separately and cumulatively the State and poor 
taxes collected on lach 100 francs of net receipts in Paris film theaters: 

State Tax Poor tax 



First class 2 Frs. 8.75 Frs. equals 10.75 Frs. 

Second class 5 " 8.75 " " 13.75 

Third class 10 " 8.75 " " 18.75 

Fourth class 15 " 8.75 " " 23.75 

Fifth class ... 20 " 8.75 " " 28.75 

The percentages of the taxes imposed to the total box- office receipts, 
(including taxes and admissions), or the gross receipts which are used for 
statistics purposes are for each 100 francs of box-office receipts. 



(1) The decree reducing the poor tax in Paris from 10 percent to S . 75 percent 
expired on December 21, 1937, and was extended by decree of January 
13, 1938. ; :. 



2670 



-139- 



Admissions 



1st 


class 


Frs. 


100 


2nd 


II 


II 


100 


3rd 


II 


II . 


100 


4th 


11 


II 


100 


5th 


II 


II 


100 



Total box-office 

Taxes receipts 

10.75 110.75 

13.75 113.75 

18.75 118.75 

23.75 123.75 

28.75 128.75 



Percentage of total 
Dox-office receipts 

10.75/110.75 - 9.706 percent 
13.75/113.75 -12.083 
18.75/118.75 -15.789 
23.75/123.75 -19.191 
28.75/128.75 -22.230 ". 



The decree of July 25, 1935, contains the previous regime of reduced 
State taxes for cinemas outside of Paris. 

In addition, municipalities have the right to assess a tax on cinemas 
equal to 50 percent of the State tax. The poor tax remains at 10 percent 
except for cities of more than 110,000 population which may reduce it. 

The Finance Law of 1932 permits municipalities outside of Paris to 
maintain the cinema taxes at the same rate which existed before the Finance 
Law of 1930. 

Therefore, there are three possibilities for the taxation of cinemas 
outside of Paris, namely: 



(1) Those on which there is no municipal tax. 



(2) Those on which there is a municipal tax of 50 percent of the new 
reduced State taxes .- 



(3) Those on which there is a municipal tax, maintaining the old rates, 
in accord with the Finance Law of 1932. 

The outstanding and heaviest taxes in France on the distributors of 
American films are: 

1. The 2 percent turnover tax on all films, rentals, and charges for 
accessory hire. 

2. The 8 percent "production" tax on prints. 

3. The "patente" or trade-license tax on main offices and branch of- 
fices in France. 

The most important tax is the 2 percent turnover tax assessed on every 
rental and also on transactions involving the rent of posters and publicity 
matters to exhibitors. 



2670 



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The 8 percent "production" tax on prints is assessed on prints imported 
from the United Slates or any other country, in addition to the regular duty, 
and on prints nade for the American companies in France. 

The "patente" ta;< is a trade-license tax a3sessed on all offices and is 
based partly on the rent and partly other considerations. It is an important 
item. 

In addition to the above taxes there is an apprentice tax of 2 percent on 
all salaries paid by the distributors. 

There is a 14 percent tax on net profits which is assessed before divi- 
dends are declared; then there is a tax of 24 percent on dividends, if de- 
lared, which is deducted before dividends are paid to the holders of bearer 
shares. There is also a tax of 4 percent on undistributed profits. 

The import duty on developed films is 20 percent ad valorem. This duty 
is assessed on arbitral value, fixed several years ago by the customs authori- 
ties on the recommendation of a French trade organization, at 25 francs per 
meter for negatives, 5 francs per meter for positive films, and 1 franc per 
meter for sound effects on films. 

In addition, there is the 8 percent "production" tax assessed on all 
positive prints imported. 

In addition to all these, there are small charges for customs, statistics, 
the French Chamber of Commerce, etc., assessed against all imports. 

THEATERS- 

There are approximately 4,500 theaters in France. The total seating 
capacity of these theaters is approximately 2,300,000. It is very difficult 
to give a figure for the average admission price to oinemas in France. The 
average price for the first runs which show only original versions of foreign 
films is about 20 francs per seat. The average admission price to all other 
cinemas in France may be estimated at from 8 to 10 francs per seat. Admission 
prices range from 3 francs to 30 francs per seat. 

At the present time the majority of the French public prefers gay light 
comedies featuring well-known local stars. After this type of film they prefer 
the so-called super-films in modern rather than historic style. Generally 
speaking the rench public does not like the historical costume films. The 
public of the cinemas on the Champs-Elysees which specialize in original 
versions prefer, at the present time, gay light comedies from the United 
States. 



2670 



-141- 



During the past year the American colored films have had exceptional 
success in the neighborhood and provincial houses. The Champs- -Elysees public 
has not been particularly enthusiastic about colored films, but the great num- 
ber of film fans have rushed to see this type of film during the past year. 
The French have shown no particular interest in either English or German films 
during the past year. 

The yearly gross income at film theaters is estimated between 900,000,000 
and 920,000,000 francs for 1937, an increase of about 50,000,000 francs over 
last year. 



Approximately 3,700 out of a total of 4,500 theaters are wired for showing 
sound films. 

Further sales of up-to-date sound equipment for cinemas in France have 
become very difficult. Of 3,700 wired houses now in France, competent rep- 
resentatives in the trade estimate that no more than 2,000 are really equipped 
with anything like good apparatus. Many of the other 1,700 cinemas are open 
only one or two days a week and their revenue is probably too limited to 
permit them to buy and install up-to-date sound equipment. 

The 800 cinemas which are not equipped for sound are located in very 
small villages and are for the most part opened only one day a week. Their 
revenues are too small to permit the purchase of 35-mm sound equipment. It 
is possible that later these cinemas may be able to purchase discarded equip- 
ment from the more prosperous cinemas, but it is more probable that they will 
ultimately install 16-mm sound projection machines which are nov/ being offered 
for sale in France. 

In addition, there are approximately 1,000 more localities in France 
where there are no cinemas, which may offer a market, particularly for 16-mm 



SOUND- 



apparatus . 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



7,930,138 ft 
299.786 ft 



$151,432 
$9,236 



1936 



Positive sound 
Negative sound 



7,896,664 ft 
266,695 ft 



$168,935 
$10,014 



« » ♦ 



2670 



-142- 



GREECE 

LEGISLATION- 

Motion-picture films are included in Group A of the Greek import-control 
schedule; with the exception or certain limitations outlined below,- their 
importation is free of quota and exchange restrictions. 

In the case of films imported from countries such as Germany , which have 
official clearing arrangements with Greece and a trade balance in the latter'G 
favor, payment of drafts covering royalties and prints is effected without 
difficulty. The same is true of the United States and England, which coun- 
tries do business with Greece on the basis of payment in unrestricted foreign 
exchange both for imports and exports, In the case of countries such as Aus- 
tria and Czechoslovakia, with which Greece has clearing facilities but an 
adverse trade balance, payment is delayed until drafts can be settled in 
chronological order as funds become available in the clearing accounts. In 
the case of Greek imports from countries like France, with which all trade 
is subject to private barter arrangements, a premium usually must be paid 
by the importing firm to an exporter of Greek products for the use of his 
so-called compensation exchange permit. In the case of imports from France, 
this premium currently (December 1937) ranges between 25 and 30 percent. 

There are no limitations on the importation and exhibition of new s reals 
and shorts not exceeding 500 meters in total length. These may be imported 
by anyone in any quantity, and exchange to pay for the cost of prints and about 
$75 per reel for royalties is made available in accordance with the general 
methods doscribed above. 

The formalities to be observed in importing fe ature film s from any 
country may be summarized as follows: 

(1) When clearing a film the local importers are required to file with 
the custom5 authorities the following documents: 

(a) A signed declaration to the effect that the film to be imported 
will be exhibited for the first time between October 1 and May 1, which period 
represents the theatrical season in Greece. 

(b) A signed declaration specifying whether the film to be imported 
will be exhibited for the first time and for a full week in a motion-picture 
theater in Athens charging 20 drachmas (18 cents) and up for an orchestra seat 
or in a theater charging less than 20 drachmas; also undertaking that in the 
course of the same week no other feature film will be exhibited in the same 
theater. 



2670 



-143- 



(2) It is forbidden to import feature films intended for exhibition in 
first-run houses with orchestra-seat admission fees of 20 drachmas or more, 
if they are invoiced at more than 200,000 drachmas (about $1,800) including 
royalty and cost of first print. It is also forbidden to import films intended 
for release through houses with orchestra-seat prices of less than 20 drachmas 
which are invoiced at over 60,000 drachmas ($540). The above invoice values 
must be certified by the Invoice Control Commission at the port of entry. 
These commissions are authorized to disallow any amounts exceeding the above- 
mentioned values. Extra prints of films may be imported and paid for in 
unrestricted exchange provided no royalties are included in the invoice. 

(3) Exhibitors operating air-conditioned motion-picture theaters are 
exempt from the requirement of releasing films imported by them only between 
October 1 and May 1 (paragraph 1 (a) above) . 

(4) All royalty rights must be shown on the invoice and must be settled 
at the time of importation of the film. No exchanga may be obtained for royal- 
ties based on box-office receipts. 

Foreign shippers are required to sign and mail directly co the Invoice 
Control Commission at the Greek port of destination the original invoice 
covering each shipment to be cleared through Greek customs. A signed copy 
of the same invoice must be mailed to the consignee for presentation by him to 
the Invoice Control Commission for purposes of verification. To obviate delays 
in the delivery of mail addressed to a commission, it is better to use the 
French title: Commission de Controle des Factures . No street address is 
necessary — simply the name of the city. 

CEKSORSHIP- 

Film censorship is controlled by the Domestic Press Bureau of the Ministry 
of Press and Tourism. Existing regulations provide that all films to be 
exhibited in Greece must be censored and furnished with a numbered license. 
The license number must be shown under the title of each film, together with a 
statement as to whether the film has been approved for children and adults. 
Children under 16 years of age may not be admitted to motion-picture theaters 
unless the film shown has been approved by the Censorship Board as suitable 
for children. Preview of films is not required for censorship purposes; only 
a synopsis of the story with full translation of the dialogue. It is only in 
exceptional cases or when there is some doubt as to the character of the film 
that a preview is required. 

Until 1936 film censorship was quite lenient in Greece. Subsequently it 
has become very severe as regards communistic propaganda or ideas which may be 
considered as radical. Films even remotely connected with political or social 
revolutionary movements, including the French Revolution, are liable to be 
banned or so mutilated as to make them unsui-^able for exhibition. Censorship 



2670 



-144- 



is also rigid on "detective" or "gangster" films derogatory to the prestige of 
police authorities or which dramatize criminals and leave crime unpunished; 
also on films likely to hurt the feelings of friendly nations. As to private 
morals censorship is fairly lenient, and society plays are seldom objected 
to by the Board of Censors. 

The only film-censorship statistics available are for the period from 
February 1 to October 1, 1937. During the above period a total of 201 motion- 
picture films were censored, of which 194 were passed and 7 were rejected. 
Of those rejected three were of American production. In addition certain 
passages were cut from one American film. According to the Ministry of Press 
and Tourism, the general reason for rejection was "subversive propaganda". 

COMPETITION- 

At present American films control fully 70 percent of the Greek trade. 
Included in this percentage are films dubbed or produced in the European 
studios of American producers. During 1937 the position of American films 
was further strengthened. This is attributed by the trade partly to the 
better quality of American films shipped to Greece and also to the generally 
poorer quality of German films, which in the past enjoyed tremendous popu- 
larity in this country. It has been pointed out that improved dubbing tech- 
nique and clearer speech on the part of American actors and actresses went far 
to increase the popularity of American films in Greece, both in dubbed and 
original versions. Evidence of the latter may be seen in the fact that 
beginning with the 1937-1938 season one of the leading theaters in Athens has 
inaugurated the plan of devoting the opening day of its weekly programs to the 
showing of original English versions (with Greek subtitles) of all American 
films exhibited; previously nearly all of the films shown were dubbed (French) 
versions. Also the number of films shown in original English versions for a 
full week in first-run houses is increasing rapidly. 

During 1936-37 a marked improvement was noted in the quality of French 
films, and French participation in the local film trade is expected to be 
larger in 1937-38. 

Society dramas and musical comedies appeal to the more prosperous classes, 
but there is also a very good market for American "action" films. Historical 
films are in better demand than a few years ago. 

During the period from October 1, 1936, through September 30, 1937, 
a total of 355 feature films were released in Greece. Of these 253 (71 per- 
cent) were American, 63 (18 percent) v/ere German, and 28 (8 percent) French. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Under the reciprocal copyright protection agreement signed between Greece 
and the United States on January 27, 1932, American films receive full pro- 



2670 



-145- 



tection. No films may be shown unless evidence is produced that all import 
duties and taxes have been defrayed. 

PRODUCTION- 

Confined to a few news and advertising reels and the filming of sub- 
titles. There are no studios in Greece. 

There is no production in Greece, and distribution is carried out mostly 
through independent exchanges, many of which handle a very limited number of 
films each year. Two American producers maintain branch offices in Greece in 
the form of companies organized under Greek laws, while the rest of the 
better-known American producers operate through local distributors. 

TAXES- 

The present schedule of taxation on motion-picture tickets is as follows: 

Per cent of Tax 

On admissions up to 10 drachmas 10 percent 

On admissions of more than 10 drachmas and up to 

15 drachmas 15 percent 

On admissions of more than 15 drachmas and up to 

20 drachmas 20 percent 

On admissions of more than 20 drachmas 25 percent 

In addition, motion-picture theater tickets are subject to the following 
surtaxes: 

(1) Contribution to the Artists', Musicians', and Theater Technicians' 

Fund; 

(a) 0.20 drachmas per ticket on admissions up to 5 drachmas. 

(b) 0.50 drachmas per ticket on admissions of more than 5 and 
up to 10 drachmas. 

(c) 0.70 drachmas per ticket on admissions of more than 10 
and up to 30 drachmas. 

(d) 1.50 drachmas per ticket on admissions of more than 30 
drachmas. 

(2) Surtax of 1 percent on net admission fees for the benefit of the 
Royal Theater (State-operated) in Athens. 



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Quite aside from the tax on tickets, motion-picture theaters are subject 
to a license tax of 20 drachmas per day for forenoon perforaances, 35 drachmas 
per day for afternoon performances, and 70 drachmas for evening performances. 
These taxes are levied regardless of the number of shows in each group. For 
cities of less than 10,000 inhabitants a reduction of 50 percent is accorded. 
All taxes are payable in advance, but a refund is made on unsold tickets. 
The daily performance tax is considered particularly onerous for the smll 
second- and third-run houses, since it constitutes a disproportionate drain on 
their meagre, box-office, receipts. 

The import duty. on positive films, including all surtaxes, amounts to 
126 drachmas per kilogram or approximately 51 cents per pounds. In addition, 
there is a 3- percent excise. tax.payable at the time of entry, which is calcu- 
lated on the basis of the invoice value (cost of first print and royalties) 
plus the amount of import duty. The import duty, together with the surtaxes 
and clearing charges, averages about 0.70 to 0.90 drachmas ($0.0063 to $0.0081) 
per foot, depending on the amount of royalty rights. 

THEATERS- 

The total number of motion-picture theaters in operation in Greece is 
about 150. Many of these, however, do not operate regularly and are closed a 
good part of the year with frequent changes of management. Owing to the ab- 
sence of adequate ventilating and air-conditioning facilities, practically all 
indoor theaters close down during the hot summer months. At the same time a 
large number of open-air theaters are started, using the projection and sound 
equipment of the indoor houses. The aggregate seating capacity of all the 
regular theaters is estimated at 70,000 to 75,000. There are nine first-run 
theaters in Athens, totaling about 13,000 seats. Admission prices range from 
5 to . 35 drachmas (4^ cents to 31^ cents). In Athens and Salonika first-run 
houses charge 13 to 25 drachmas (16 cents to 22| cents) for orchestra seats, 
while in Piraeus 16 drachmas (I4j cents) is the upper limit. 

Noticeable progress has been made since 1935 in the motion-picture 
theater business in Greece. Four large and fairly well-equipped theaters were 
erected in Athens, one of which is air-conditioned and can operate throughout 
the year. Along with the regular motion-picture theaters, a news-reel theater 
also was started in Athens in the early part of 1936 and has so far proved 
a success. One or t.vo more news-reel theaters are being contemplated. The 
total investment in motion-picture theaters may be estimated at $1,500,000 
to $2,000,000, a majority of which is accounted for by a few theaters in 
Athens. The motion-picture trade in Greece receives no subsidies of any kind 
from the Government. 

SOUND- 

With the exception of a few theaters located in small provincial towns, 
practically all motion-picture houses in Greece are wired for sound. The 



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equipment used in the provincial theaters is mostly assembled locally from 
imported parts. Practically all sound systems used can reproduce sound ofl 
film and disk. The possibilities of selling high-quality sound equipment to 
provincial theaters are extremely limited, owing to their low earning power. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 1,063,082 ft. $35,035 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 1,354,215 . $30,607 
Negative sound 

• * « 

GUATEMALA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no quota or contingent laws governing imports of motion-pic- 
ture films into Guatemala, and no legislation adversely affecting the distri- 
bution of American or other films in that country. 

The only legislation enacted during 1937 having a bearing on the motion- 
picture industry in Guatemala was embodied in Legislative Decree Nc. 2178, of 
April 2, 1937, providing for exemption from customs duties of educational 
films and news reels, and in an Executive Order, reported to have been approved 
in October, 1937, requiring that firms or individuals wishing to make motion 
pictures in the country must obtain permission from the Ministry of Education, 
and must agree to respect the national dignity and culture in such pictures. 

CENSORSHIP- 

There is no official board of censorship in Guatemala, and, while censor- 
ship is exercised over the nature of pictures shown, it is generally lenient'. 
Censorship is under the jurisdiction of the Chief of the Police Service, and 
exhibitors of motion pictures are held responsible for the type of pictures 
shown and are subject to fine if a picture contains anything contrary to the 
laws of decency and public order. The Guatemalan officials will also cooperate 
with consular or diplomatic representatives of other countries by prohibiting 
the showing of pictures to which such representatives object on the grounds 
that they represent their countries in an untrue or unfavorable light. 

During 1937 four or five films have been rejected, three American and 
two Spanish-speaking films of foreign manufacture. Of the three American 
pictures rejected, one was banned upon request of the consular officials of 



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the country which it portrayed. 
COMPETITION- 

The chief competitors of American films in Guatemala are the Spanish- 
speaking pictures, chiefly Mexican and Argentine, and these films are con- 
tinuing to push out the American films even though there are a number of 
American stars who are very popular here and whose pictures are still im- 
portant box-office attractions. 

In the districts outside of Guatemala Citj the percentage of audiences 
understanding English is small, and there is also the group that does not 
read and to whom even Spanish titles are uselss. For this trade, which 
represents probably 50 percent of the business, a Spanish -speaking picture, 
even though it may lack the finer details of construction, is preferable to any 
English-speaking picture. In Guatemala City, where a part of each audience 
enjoys and generally prefers American-made pictures, a Spanish-speaking pic- 
ture has a very wide appeal. During the fall months of this year a very con- 
siderable impetus has been given to the Spanish -speaking films by the showing 
of probably the best film that has been made by the Mexican film industry. 
This picture was followed by two other films starring the same Mexican actor, 
and by the personal appearance of the actor in a concert in Guatemala City. 

It is estimated that between 60 percent and 70 percent of the films 
imported into Guatemala are still American, but the percentage is somewhat 
lower than last year, and the average showing time of a Spanish-speaking film 
is from two to three times that of an English-speaking film. 

A few German, French, and British pictures are imported into Guatemala, 
but they do not have a wide general appeal outside the foreign colonies. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Inter-American Copyright Conventions at Mexico City and Buenos Aires, 
January 27, 1902, and August 11, 1910, ratified July 13, 1914, and April 9, 
1910. 

PRODUCTION- 

No motion pictures are produced in Guatemala. 
TAXES- 

Distributors pay a franchise tax, a stamp tax, and the regular 5 percent 
profits tax. Theater operators pay the license tax, 15 percent of gross re- 
ceipts for the "Benef icencia Publica", and a profits tax. Customs duties on 
imports amount to $1.50 per gross kilogram, plus 4 percent ad valorem consular 
fee. 

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theater:- 

There are 34 exhibitors of motion pictures in Guatemala, including 18 
•hea'ers with an estimated total seating capacity of 18,000 and a number of 
clubs, halls on large plantations, etc., where motion pictures are shown from 
ime to time. 

SOUND- 

Twenty-eight of •'he theaters and other esta'-lishments are equipped for 
sound, and there are one or two operators who have portable sound equipment 
with which they cover a number of small towns on a more or less regular 
schedule. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 1,131,046 ft. $17,756 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 1,215,406 ft. $16,784 
Negative sound 

* * « 
HAITI 

LEGISLATION- 

There is no legislation adverse to the introduction of motion pictures- 
in Haiti. 

CENSORSHIP- 

According to '.he censorship lav of July 12, 1935, those pictures which 
are found to be inadmissible to children under 18 years of age must be so 
adertised on the motion-pic ,ure billboard; children under this age must be 
refused admittance. The Department of the Interior is given the power to 
censor films which are considered to be immoral or dangerous t-o the maintenance 
cf in ernal order. Non-compliance with the censorship regulations renders the 
exhibi.jr liable to a fine of from $100 to $500. 

COMPETITION- 

Films are 18 percent American and 70 percent French. 

French pictures have gained immensely in this market during the past 
year. The above percentages are based on weight of films j-mported. If 



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value is taken, the percentages are about 11 for American and 83 for French. 
The language question is believed to be the principal factor in favor of 
French films. There is no objection to dubbed films if they are in French. 

Imports were as follows (during the fiscal year ended September 30, 1337) : 



Cou ntry of o rip.iii 

Belgium 

Chile 

France 

Germany 

Guadeloupe 

Jamaica 

United States 



Total I 4,485 I 24,319.40 



COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyright protection is not available in Haiti, 
PRODUCTION- 

There is not, nor has there been, any production of motion pictures in 
Haiti. 

TAXES- 

A tax of 10 percent is imposed on theater admissions. 

Communal taxes for movie houses or theaters located in Port-au-Prince 
are $40 annually for theaters with seating capacity of less than 500; S50 
for those seating from 500 to 1,000; and $60 annually or $2 for each showing 
for those seating more than 1,000. 

Moving-picture houses located in the other towns of Haiti are assessed 
$30 each for a seating capacity up to 500; $40 for a capacity of 500 to 
1,000. Taxes for those with greater seating capacity than 1,000 are the same 
as provided for in Port-au-Prince. (Note: Communal taxes given are for 
motion-picture houses owned and operated by Haitians. Taxes are doubled in the 
case of foreign owned and operated theaters. ) 

Finished films, even though intended to be reexported, are classified 
under paragraph 11045 of the import tariff, which provides a duty of $0.20 
per net kilo. A surtax of 10 percent of the duties payable is provided. 



Quantity__k il05 ] Value , .dol lars 



44 

23 
3,191 

234 
171 
822 



$132.00 
20.00 
20,342.00 
.40 
535 . 20 
463,60 
2,826.20 



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THEATERS- 

There are seven theaters in Haiti. The two most mportant are located 
in Port-au-Prince; the largest has a seating capacity of 1,200, and the second 
can accommodate 700. The others have an average seating capacity of 300 each. 
Admission prices range from 10 to 60 cents. Dramas are preferred, but musical 
comedies are also well received. As French is the official language of Haiti, 
French filas are most in demand. 

It is estimated that the investment in motion-picture houses and equip- 
ment in Haiti is $150,000, of which $100,000 is invested in one large estab- 
lishment in Port-au-Prince. 

SOUND- 

All seven theaters are wired for showing of sound films, and, while small 
in size, it is believed that they amply fulfill the requirements for Haiti. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 204,172 ft. SI, 434 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 308,786 ft. $2,655 
Negative sound 

♦ ♦ » 

HONDURAS 

LEGISLATION- 

There ore no exchange restrictions or contingent 3aws in force in Hon- 
duras. American films are in no manner discriminated against in that country, 
and there is no legislation affecting the distribution of them within the 
country . 

CENSORSHIP- 

According to statistics supplied by the local film-censoring bureau, 
a total of 306 films was censored during the fiscal year ended on July 31, 
1937. Of this number, 8 v;ere rejected. Those rejected included 2 American 
films, 1 German, and 5 Spanish films. The reason for the rejection of these 
films was their bad condition, including bad sound and the fact that some of 
them had been scratched. 



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COMPETITION- 

The largest competitors of American films in this market are Mexican 
films. A conservative estimate of the percentage of American films exhibited 
in Honduras is 75 percent. American films are well liked. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Inter-American Copyright Conventions, Mexico City and Buenos Aires, 
January 2, 1902, and August 11, 1910; ratified July 13 1914, and April 9, 
1914. 

production- 
No films are produced in Honduras. 

No objection is made to American films that are "dubbed" in the language 
of the country, which is Spanish. Though most foreign films shown in Honduras 
have either Spanish sound text or are "dubbed" in the native language, the 
films may be shown without either the Spanish sound text or the subtitles. 

TAXES- 

Motion-picture theaters in Honduras are required to pay from 5 to 10 
lempiras ($0.50 at present exchange) taxes for each day on which they operate. 
No tax is levied on distributors. 

According to the Honduran Customs Tariff, motion-picture films imported 
into Honduras pay 0.05 lempiras duty per gross kilogram. In addition to this 
duty, the following tax is also collected on films imported: For each film 
in the Spanish language, whether silent or sound with titles in Spanish or 
combined with another language 15 lempiras. For each film in any other 
language or combined with Spanish, 25 lempiras. The following kinds of 
films are exempt from paying this tax: Films such as shorts, news reels, 
advertisements, educational films, and comic cartoons. 

THEATERS- 

There are 23 theaters in operation in Honduras, having a total seating 
capacity of 12,100. The admission prices range from 0.10 to 0.75 lempira. 
The Wild West type of picture is preferred by the majority of Hondurans, 
though any film of action and adventure is apt to be well received. 

SOUND- 

There are 23 theaters wired for sound in Honduras. 



-153- 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 1,C19 ft. $"5 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 32,620 ft. ^435 
Negative sound 

* * * 
HUNGARY 

LEGISLATION- 

Accordir.g to Decree No. 26,0/1932, dated May 10, 1932, the duty on films 
imported into Hungary is 250 gold crowns (1 gold crown equals $0,343, present 
gold basis, and about $0,223 at the prevailing commercial rate through the 
National Bank of Hungary) per 100 kilograms (220 pounds) plus 6 percent phase 
turnover tax, "Import certificates" for sound films cost 100 pengo (1 pengo 
equals $0.2961, present gold basis, and about $0.1925 at the prevailing com- 
mercial rate) for films less than 200 meters in length, 200 pengo if between 
201 and 400 meters, 400 pengo between 401 and 800 meters, 600 pengo between 
801 and 1,200 meters, and 1,000 pengo for all others. Silent films require no 
import certificates. The same decree provides that an additional fee of 20 
fillers for the benefit of the Hungarian Film Fund must be paid on each meter 
of censored and approved film if the Hungarian titles were prepared in Hungary, 
30 fillers per meter if the Hungarian titles were prepared abroad. By Decree 
No. 5'.'10/1933 M, E., dated May 26, 1933, the last-mentioned fee was increased 
from 30 to 50 fillers, and by Decree No. 8484/1934 M. E., dated September 29. 
1934, taking effect on October 1, 1934, it was increased to 1 pengo per meter. 
The fee of 20 fillers, payable on foreign films for which the Hungarian titles 
are made in Hungary, was not affected by the subsequent modifications. In 
addition, there is chargsd a regular censorship fee of 4 fillers per meter on 
films made in Hungary and 10 fillers per meter on films made abroad. Weekly, 
news, educational and scientific films are exempt from all charges except cen- 
sorship fee and import duty. Foreign-made equipment and supplies require 
special import permits issued by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. 

Decree No. 180.000/1935, B. M., required importers on films to submit 
a censorship card for every film imported into the country. The money paid 
for these cards goes toward the support of the Hungarian film-producing in- 
dustry. Up to July 1, 1936, the National Motion Picture Examining Committee 
(Orszagos Mozgokep\ izsgalo Bizottsag) issued V censorship cards to each pro- 
ducer of a Hurgarian feature film over 1,600 meters in length, but since 
Aug St 1, 1936, eig'.t cards have been issued under the authority of Decree 
175.000/1936-B.M. These cards are bought and sold in the open market and their 



2670 



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price depends upon supply and demand. At present the price varies' between 
1,000 and 1,100 pengo each. Films which, in the opinion of the National 
Motion Picture Examining Committee, are of the highest quality with regard 
to cultural and artistic merit, receive special premiums in the form of cen- 
sorship cards. Firms producing such films may receive a maximum of 10 cards 
annually . 

According to Decree No. 174.000/1936 B. M. (effective August 31, 1936) 
first-run houses in Hungary may exhibit only one feature film over 1,200 meters 
in length per performance. First-run houses are permitted to give three per- 
formances on week days and four on Sundays and holidays. A single performance 
may consist of not more than 3,400 meters of film. The same decree forbids 
first-run houses to give half-price performances or to sell tickets at special 
rates. Theaters other than first-run houses are permitted to show only one 
feature film at a single performance. Second-run and other motion-picture 
theaters in Budapest and the Provinces may give four performances on week 
days and five on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays. The program may consist 
of 3,800 meters of film. According to the decree, all performances muot end 
by 12 o'clock midnight. 

Decree No, 174.000/1936 B. M. prescribes that every motion-picture theater 
employee shall have one free day each week, which can not be exchanged for some 
other consideration. 

According to Decree No. 175.000/1936 B. M. , importers of short films are 
obliged to purchase a "short censorship card", one of which must be submitted 
with every short film imported. The short film censorship cards are distribut- 
ed according to Decree No. I'i 5 . 100/1936 B. M. as follows: Up to 200 meters the 
producer receives 5 cards; from 201 to 400 meters, 10 cards; from 401 to 600 
meters, 15 cards, and over 600 meters, 20 cards. The value of the short cen- 
sorship cards depends upon supply and demand, the present price being ap- 
proximately 80 pengo. It is rumored in trade circles that it is proposed to 
revise the decree so that the number of short film cards to be submitted with 
imported films of less than 1,200 may be established on the basis of the 
length of the film. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Filra censorship is under the direction of the Royal Hungarian Ministry 
of the Interior, the members of the Censorship Board being appointed by the 
minister, Appeal can be taken from the board's decision in the first, second, 
and third instances, the final appeal being to the Minister of the Interior. 
In most cases one of the appeal boards has permitted pictures previously 
rejected by the Board to be shown aftrer certain changes in subtitles were made 
or offending parts eliminated. Pictures are classified in two groups by the 
Board of Censors, films that may be shown universally, and films that may be 
shown only to persons over 16 years of age. 



2670 



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Nonofficial censorship does not exist in Hungary. The pictures are 
censored by the official board solely with regard to public morals and the 
safety of the State. 

There has been no discrimination against American film companies, and, 
in cases where rejections were deemed necessary, marked consideration has been 
shown by the authorities. 

There were 1,043 films (952,153 meters) censored during 1936, of which 
991 (932,913 meters) were sound and 52 (19,240 meters) silent films. Of the 
total films censored, 33 (67,963 meters), or 4 percent of the total, were 
rejected. Of the total sound films licensed for production, 441 (42.3 per- 
cent) were American, 206 (19.8 percent) German, 67 (6.4 percent) French, 10 
(0.9 percent) Italian, 23 (2.2 percent) British, 29 (2.8 percent) Austrian, 
22 (2.1 percent) Scandinavian, and 245 (23.5 percent) Hungarian. According 
to the subjects of the films, 563 were sound feature films, 187 educational, 
237 news reels, and 81 advertising films. 

COMPETITldN- 

Until 1936 there were scarcely any changes in Hungarian film statistics, 
imports having fluctuated only slightly! ' With the adoption of one-film shows 
by Hungarian theaters in the 1936 season, the showing of Hungarian films 
increased greatly and the importation of foreign films decreased. During 
the preceding season 1935-36 (August 1 to July 31), 235 films appeared on the 
market, compared with 196 during the 1936-37 season. The decrease of 39 films 
resulted mainly from the smaller number of foreign films imported. American 
film imports decreased by 14 percent, British by 11 percent, and German by 
18 percent. 

During 1936 29 films were produced in Hungary, including 4 films with 
German dialogue. It is estimated that Hungary will produce 35 Hungarian films 
during the present year. The decrease in the proportion of American films 
shown was caused principally by the development of the Hungarian film industry, 
the products of which have practically eliminated American films from the 
provincial motion-picture theaters. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- •■ • 

A special convention signed October 13, 1913, gives copyright protection. 

PRODUCTION- 

There are two Government-controlled studios producing films in Hungary. 
During 1936, the Hungarian Film Bureau (Magyar Film Iroda) produced 8 feature 
films (18,257 meters), 13 short films (4,316 meters), and 53 Hungarian news 
reels -(14,430 meters) , a total of 74 films (36,973 meters). No figures con- 
cerning the cost of production of films by the Hungarian Film Bureau are 
available . 



2670 



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The Hunnia Film Studio produced 24 feature films averaging 2,50 meters, 
a total of 60,000 meters. Sixteen of the films produced were in Hungarian 
and German (total 4) and four in German only. The cost of production varied 
from 85,000 to 165,000 pengo per film. To expand domestic production, the 
producers of Hungarian films are allowed to use the Hunnia Studio free of 
charge provided the Hungarian Film Industry Fund accepts the theme, in which 
case the Film Industry Fund pays the Hunnia 40 pengo per day for the use of 
the Studio. 

TAXES- 



The amusement tax in first-run motion-picture houses in Budapest be- 
tween October 1 and April 30 is 6 percent of the total receipts if the seating 
capacity is over 400, and 5 percent if the seating capacity is under 400. 
Between May 1 and September 30 the amusement tax is 3 percent in theaters ol 
over 400 seating capacity, and 2 percent in theaters of less than 400 seating 
capacity. In motion-picture theaters other than first-run houses, the tax is 
5 percent if the seating capacity is more than 600. and 4 percent if less than 
600, from October 1 to April 30; from May 1 to September 30 the tax is 2 per- 
cent regardless of the seating capacity. In the provinces the amusement tax 
varies from 5 to 15 percent. The additional turnover tax (national) is 3 per- 
cent , 



THEATERS- 

There are 420 motion-picture theaters in operation in Hungary. 



SOUND- 



All 420 theaters are wired for sound. 
IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1S37 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



1,118,764 ft. $27,783 

108,344 ft. $3,597 

1.607,612 ft. $38,026 

32,487 ft. $455 



* * * 



INDIA 



LEGISLATION- 

No legislation unfavorable to the motion-picture industry in India was 
enacted in 1937. Thus far there are no laws prohibiting foreign exchange 



2670 



-157- 



or any giving other countries preference over American films; neither are 
quota restrictions in effect or contemplated. Rumors of anything in the 
way of legislation, which might affect American distribution, are nil, and, 
with the present type of entertainment offered by the American films, it -is- 
believed that it will require a great deal of agitation before any adverse 
efforts could attract much attention. 

CENSORSHIP- 

During the period January 1 to October 31 1,208 American films (represent- 
ing 60 percent of all films censored) were submitted for censorship, of which 
7 were rejected and 1,005 feet were cut from a total of 10 films. Censorship 
remains very strict. 

COMPETITION- . 

. ■ Indian films continue to be our greatest competitor, and during the first 
10 months of this year America's participation in the 5,952,205 feet submitted 
was 46 percent, India's share 38 percent, Britain's 13 percent, while the re- 
mainder of the business went to other foreign companies. 

Indian films are gaining in popularity; however, the majority of English- 
speaking people prefer American films in preference to domestic films. On the 
other hand, more and more Europeans are being attracted to Indian films. Whe- 
ther this is due in a sense to the novelty or newness of the industry is a 
matter of conjecture. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- , : . 

Same as British Copyright Act. 
PRODUCTION- 

There are no figures available on the number of Indian pictures produced 
during 1937. However, 344 Indian films were offered for censorship during the 
first 10 months of the year. 

The production facilities of the Indian producers are on par with their 
standards, yet their facilities are far below the standards maintained in 
America or England and the technique on the whole does not compare with that 
of America. 

Theoretically there is no objection to American films being "dubbed" in 
the native language, but such a course would not be practical, as each Province 
has its ov;n language. The two principal languages, namely, Hindi and Urdu,, 
are understood by a large percentage of the Indians, but on the whole it does 
not seem that any advantage could be gained from "dubbing". 



2670 



-158- 



The Government is very sympathetic toward the Indian producers and, while 
there is no direct subsidy provided for the industry, the lesser import duty 
on unexposed films over exposed ones is, no doubt, a form ol subsidy. 

TAXES- 

Taxation seems fairly high when the total of the many taxes are consider- 
ed, namely, theater entertainment, distributor's income, censoring tax, and 
vault license fees. The customs valuation on foreign films remains at 7 annas 
per foot on features and 3 annas per foot on shorts, which is the basis of 
applying the standard rate of 37^ percent customs duty, 

THEATERS- 

Motion-pic ture authorities place the number of theaters in India anywhere 
from 750 to 950, but, according to reports which are believed to be reliable, 
there are about 900 at present, 400 of which show Indian films exclusively, 
about 150 showing foreign pictures and the remainder exhibiting both foreign 
and Indian. 

The average admission price is estimated to be about 32 cents U. S. cur- 
rency; the price range in Indian money, is from 2 annas to 3 rupees. 

Indian social pictures are the most popular among the natives. 

SOUND- 

It is estimated that something over 600 theaters are wired for sound; 
however, most authorities place the number which are capable of rendering a 
reasonably good program at about 550. 

Motion-picture theaters have increased in number more than 400 percent in 
the past 15 years, and no doubt many of the silent ones are comparatively new. 
In view of this, the prospects of selling sound equipment to a good portion 
of them should be fair. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 5,476,116 ft. $101,313 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 4,749,400 ft. $94,879 

Negative sound 4,375 ft. $247 

» » * 



2670 



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IRAN (PERSIA) 

LEGISLATION- 

All imports into Iran are govsrned by the law promulgated February 25, 
1931. Under this law the Government publishes a set of quotas which are not 
now restrictive in practice. For the economic year ending June 21, 1938, this 
quota has been placed at 3,000,000 rials ($182,927) for motion pictures, films, 
cameras, and related products of various kinds. Normally the total imports of 
these products amount to about 1,500,000 rials ($91,463) in value. 

Every importer is required to secure an import permit from the Ministry 
of Commerce for his goods, and, in order to secure such a permit, he must buy 
export certificates from the Bank Mellie Iran at a premium of 15 percent of 
the face value. All transactions in foreign exchange have been a monopoly 
of the Government since the enactment of the foreign-exchange control law of 
March 1, 1936. Under this law all applicants for foreign exchange are re- 
quired to secure foreign-exchange permits from the Foreign Exchange Commission. 
In order to obtain these permits, importers must make a deposit of 5 percent 
of the value of their orders and at this time they may, if they wish, purchase 
up to 25 percent of the value of their orders for immediate transmittal to the 
foreign exporter, the balance being covered by deferred exchange permits ma- 
turing in from 4 to 6 months. At the present time foreign exchange is very 
scarce in the country and importers encounter considerable difficulty in 
obtaining the necessary permits. 

Iran has a trade agreement with the Soviet Union and a Clearance Conven- 
tion with Germany. The last-mentioned is understood to have little or no 
effect upon imports into Iran ^rom Germany at present. Importers now are re- 
quired to obtain authorization to import from the Ministry of Commerce, and 
it is understood that such authorization is not now easily obtainable. This 
requirement is understood to have come into effect a few months ago when it was 
realized that the unrestricted exchange between Iran and Germany worked un- 
favorably to Iran. 

CENSORSHIP- 

The censorsl'ip in Iran is very strict v/ith regard to any film showing 
revolutions, riots, internal disorders of whatever kind, or the horrors of war. 
Indecent films, films advocating pacifism, and films believed to disparage 
the reli::i3n of Islam ar^ also forbidden. Out of approximately 300 films ex- 
amined, only one was totally rejected by the censor during the year. This 
picture was of American origin and showed a Hnpsburg pretender attempting a 
restoration in Austria, 



2670 



-160- 



COMPETITION- 

There are no motion-picture films produced in Iran. German films are 
the closest competitors of American pictures, and approximately 30 percent 
of the films shown in Iran are of German origin, as compared with 50 percent 
American, 15 percent French, and 5 percent others. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There is no copyright law in Iran. 

PRODUCTION- 

As already stated, there is no domestic film production in Iran. The 
predominant language of the country is Persian. French, however, is widely 
spoken among the educated classes. The titles and sub-titles are ordinarily 
"dubbed" in Persian. 

TAXES- 

There is a fairly high import duty on foreign films — 100 rials ($6.10) 
per kilogram, net weight. The only other tax levied on motion-picture films 
is a 5 percent municipality tax on cinema tickets. 

There are 35 motion-picture theaters in Iran. Their annual gross income 
is estimated at about 4,000,000 rials ($243,902.44). The total seating 
capacity has been estimated at 22,000. Ticket prices range from 1 rial ($0.07) 
to 10 rials ($0.61) for the best seats. The average price, then, may be taken 
as 5 rials ($0.30). It is understood that in the Provinces tickets are about 
50 percent cheaper than in Teheran, the capital. 

According to the best available information, the total investment in the 
motion-picture business in Iran amounts from 7,000,000 to 8, 000, 000 rials ( from 
$426,829 to $487,805). This money is invested in the distribution and exhibi- 
tion of the films, there being no domestic production. No special Government 
assistance or subsidy is given. 

SOUND- 

Of the 35 motion-picture houses in Iran, 32 are said to be wired for 
sound. The three picture houses not wired for sound are located in small 
towns, and it is doubtful whether there is much prospect of selling them 
sound equipment in the near future. German equipment has occupied a predomin- 
ant position, owing to price considerations and to the clearance convention 
between Iran and Germany, by which importers are not obliged to purchase for- 
eign exchange but pay in local currency in this country. As has been previous- 



2670 



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ly stated, however, at the present time the convention is not operating and 
all importers experience great difficulty because of the dearth of foreign 
exchange . 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 21,905 ft. $219 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 35,600 ft. $712 
Negative sound 

* * * 
IRAQ 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no lav,s prohibiting foreign exchange in Iraq. Foreign exchange 
can b© purchased or sold at the world's market quotations without any diffi- 
culty. 

There are no laws giving other countries preference over American films, 
and there are no quota or contingent laws in effect and none are contemplated. 

There is no legislation existing which might reduce or prevent American 
distribution of motion pictures. 

CENSORSHIP- 

All films are censored in Baghdad, which is the distribution center for 
films. Fev.' if any films have been rejected since November 1, 1936. The Bagh- 
dad Board of Film Censors was very lenient last year and passed many films 
which would probably have been suppressed the year before. 

No American films v.ere rejected last year. The usual grounds of rejection 
are political, religious, or moral. 

Censorship is strict or lenient depending on the policy of the cabinet 
in power. For the past year it was lenient, but prior to that period it was 
strict . 

COf.:PETITION- 

American films dominate the Iraq market. Arabic films produced in Egypt 
are very popular. They are-, however, few in number and are very expensive. 
The next most popular films after the American and Egyptian are of British 
make . 



26"0 



-162- 



About 90 percent of the films exhibited in the motion picture theaters in 
Iraq are of American make. 

American films are well received in Iraq. Films are not produced in this 
part of the world except that occasionally a short reel is made of a military 
maneuver or of other similar events. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

There is no law in Iraq protecting copyrights or foreign producers from 
piracy. However, the Baghdad Penal Code protects stolen films, but unless the 
pirated film is proven legally to have been stolen such a film can be exhibited 
in the country freely. Film producers or distributors should therefore protect 
themselves against piracy outside Iraq, particularly in Egypt and Syria, from 
where pirated films are usually imported. 

PRODUCTION- 

No domestic films are produced in Iraq. 

While there would probably be no ob j ec t^(^,'^to having American films 
"dubbed" in Arabic, the predominating language, this has not as yet been done 
locally. 

The European languages spoken locally are English and French. The former 
is more widely spoken. 

There is no requirement that foreign films must be "dubbed" in this coun- 
try. An Arabic translation of the spoken text is usually exhibited on a side 
screen. Motion-picture theaters have the facilities to do these translations. 

TAXES- ' 

A stamp tax of 12^ percent is collected from receipts of theaters. First- 
class motion-picture theaters pay a municipal tax of 3 Iraq dinars per month 
and second-class theaters pay I. D. 1.500 ($7.50). Theaters and distributors 
pay also the usual income tax. The following are the customs import duties 
imposed on cinematographic films: 

(a) Films for cinematographs (exposed), when: 

(1) Certified by the Director General of Education or the Director 
General of Health to be useful for purposes of education or health and when 
for free exhibition to the public Exempt 

(2) Certified by the Director General for Education or the Director 
ueneral of Health to be useful for purposes of education or health and when 
not for free education 250 fils (51.25) per kilo net. 



2670 



-163- 



(3) Not certified as s'a.ed in (1) or (2) preceding 500 fils (S2.50) 
per kilo net. 

THEATERS- 

There are a total of 17 motion-picture theaters at present operating in 
the country with a total seating capacity of 13,400. 

The admission prices are as follows: 

Boxes: I.D. 0.450 ($2.25) for four seats including stamp tax. 

1st class or gallery: I.D. 0.080 ($0.40) 

2nd class : I.D. 0.045 ($0.22) " 

3rd class : I.D. 0.030 ($0.15) " " " 

The types of films best liked by native audiences are of emotional char- 
acter, and "action" films are very popular. Films with long dialogues are not 
wanted. Arabic films with songs appeal very much to the public. Films with 
music, dancing, and thrills are to the taste of the people. 

The yearly gross income of motion-picture theaters in Iraq is estimated at 
about I.D. 18,500 ($92,500). The vOtal investment in the local motion-picture 
industry is as follows: 

Production - Nothing 

Distribution - About I.D. 2,500 ($12,500) 
Exhibition - About I.D. 30,000 ($150,000) 

The Iraq Government does not subsidize or render assistance in the foster- 
ing of a domestic motion-picture industry. 

SOUND- 

All 17 ihea'.ers in Iraq are •'■ired for the showing of sound films. With 
the exception of one thea'.er which is equipped with German machinery, all the 
Others have machinery of Acierican make. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 676,024 ft. $8,713 

Negative sound 1,250 ft. $60 

1936 - Positive sound 187,896 ft. $3,003 
Negative sound 



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♦ ♦ ♦ 



-164- 



ITALY 

LEGISLATION- 

The importation of films into Italy is subject to ministerial license. 
Laws do not give other countries preference over American films. "In the ad- 
ministration of this system, as regards American films, the arrangement whereby 
250 American films may be imported annually has been extended to June 30, 1938. 
The amount of money which can be exported for American films pertaining to the 
years' business is, however, limited to 20,000,000 lire. Amounts accruing in 
excess of this sum remain in Italy. 

Whereas up till July 1937, theaters were compelled by law to show 1 
Italian picture for every 3 foreign films, by a Ministerial decree of July 
1937 the ratio has been reduced to 1 to 2 — that is, one Italian picture for 
every two foreign pictures. 

All foreign films must be "dubbed" in the Italian language, and such 
"dubbing" must be done in Italy. On June 21, 1937, the "dubbing" tax, which 
had amounted to 30,000 lire for each film "dubbed", was increased to 50,000 
lire, with a surtax applying to films which earned more than 2,500,000 lire. 
The surtax was as follows: 15.000 lire for every 500,000 lire in excess of 
the 2,500,000 lire up to a maximum tax of 110,000 lire. 

The "dubbing" tax and supplements just mentioned refer to films of over 
1,000 meters. They are reduced by one-half for those between 500 and 1,000 
meters. No "dubbing" tax is required on films belov; 500 meters. As a stimulus 
to Italian production, producers of national films are entitled to "dub", 
free from the basic "dubbing" tax (but not from the supplements), four films 
for each national film projected after May 1, 1937. 

The ban on other than the Italian language in talking films is rigidly 
enforced, but singing sequences are permitted and the restriction does not 
apply to news reels. War and Russian subjects are still liable to severe 
scrutiny, and in general are not accepted. 

CENSORSHIP- 

Censorship continues to be rigorous, rejections being largely attri- 
buted to moral considerations as interpreted by the officials. 

It has been impossible to obtain figures on the total number of films 
presented to the censorship and the total number rejected. However, for 
American films the figures are given as follows: 



2670 



-135- 



Presented 1?6 

Accepted 113 

Rejected 13 

1936-57- 

Presented 155 

Accepted 141 

Rejected 14 

yTuly to December 1957 - 

Presented 93 

Accepted 74 

Rej ected 7 



Under consideration 12 

COMPETITION- 

About 75 percent of the films shown are American, the remainder being 
made up of domestic, German, French, English, and Austrian films, all "dubbed". 
All foreign films are projected in "dubbed" versions in Italy. (Today, there 
are nine "dubbing" studios in Italy, and they are stated to be doing high-grade 
work. ) 

The American film is almost without exception preferred to all other 
products. However, some of the later local productions have met with consid- 
erable success. The light farcical Italian film is very popular. Italian 
theater-goers have their preferred motion-picture stars, and it is said that 
these are much more important than the class of production in attracting 
audiences . 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Protected by the Statute and Regulations of November 17, 1935. 
PRODUCTION- 

The following producing studios are listed: Tirrenia, of Leghorn; 
Cesar, of Rome; Farnesia, of Rome; 3afar, of Rome, and now, most important of 
all, Ci'is Citta, near Rome. The former Cines have been demolished, and in 
their place, in April 1937, a vast producing center called Cine Citta v/as in- 
augurated. Cine Citta covers an area of 600,000 square meters. It has 6 up- 
to-date studios with quarters already in operation, out of a total of 9 pro- 
vidsd for by the plan. Production facilities are adequate and, with the com- 
pletion of the plan, '.vill provide for all foreseen requirements. The Italians 
claic that the techniquo is comparable with the American. All sound equipment 
is American, and it is clai.-3ed that Cine Citta is one of the most modernly 
equipped studios now existing. 



2670 



-166- 



The combined production of Italian studios during 1937 was 37 feature 
films. This includes the two very important super-productions "Scipione 
I'Africano" and "I Condittieri" . 

The industry is currently well financed, receiving very substantial 
aid from the Government in the form of advances, etc. Also, prizes are awarded 
for the best Italian productions. In the year 1935-37, out of 37 films pro- 
duced, 21 received prizes. By Decree 861, of April 29, 1937, which increased 
the "dubbing" tax as shown above, it was provided that the allowance of 2 mil- 
lion lire for meritorious films could be gradually increased up to 4 million 
lire in correlation with the increase in revenues from "dubbing" taxes, etc. 

The total investment in the Italian motion-picture industry (production, 
distribution, and exhibition) is roughly estimated at 1 billion lire. Govern- 
ment aid in the cinema industry amounts to 10 million lire per annum. This 
amount is taken from the 70 million lire tax collected annually on box-office 
receipts. The 10 million lire referred to is loaned by the State to producers, 
who, if a film makes money, return the loan; in the contrary case, the State 
accepts the loss. In addition to the foregoing, the Eanca di Lavoro also 
loans money to producers, who, however, guarantee to return such money as soon 
as the picture is released. During the past two years, the Banca di Lavoro has 
loaned 58 million lire to the industry, all of which has been returned to the 
bank. 

Italian is the language of the vast majority of persons attending motion- 
picture productions. As stated above, foreign films must be "dubbed" in 
Italian. The "dubbing" must be done in Italy. The public is well accustomed 
now to "dubbed" pictures, and there is no objection to American pictures 
"dubbed" in Italian. 

TAXES- 

Cinemas and distributors are taxed in general in the same way as other 
industrial concerns, being subject to the income tax, supplementary income tax, 
etc. Additional taxes peculiar to the film business are the "dubbing" tax and 
the taxes on cinema tickets, amounting to 10 percent on tickets costing up to 1 
lira and 20 percent on other tickets. 

Tariff duties on motion-picture films are as follows: 

Unprinted- 

(1) Sensitized 3,740 lire per 100 kilos 

(2) Unsensitized. 1,870 " " " " 
Printed 80.70 lire per 100 meters 



2670 



-167- 



THEATERS- 



There are 5,300 theaters in Italy with a total seating capacity of 
1,800,000. Of this total not more than 4,900 are commercial theaters, the 
others being those run by charitable institutions, etc. There has been an 
increase of about 10 percent in the amount of entrance tickets, which vary in 
price from 0.60 lira in tha small outlying towns to 13 lire in the first-run 
houses in the leading cities. This last figure may reach 15 lire in the 
ca^e of an iJi^Jortant picture. 



Yearly box-office receipts are computed at more than 480 million lire. 
Of this total, about 120 million lire is turned over to producers, while 
70 million lire is collected by the Govern.Tient for taxes. 



SOUMD- 



There are now 3,600 theaters equipped with sound apparatus. Gradually, 
this sound equipment has been replaced by Italian equipment, so that today not 
more than 5 percent of such apparatus is American, and the present Italian 
self-sufficiency program makes the sale and importation of foreign sound equip- 
ment very difficult. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



2,666,920 ft. $79,631 

330,821 ft. $18,069 

1,278,391 ft. $27,512 

272,905 ft. $18,815 



» » » 



JAMAICA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws in Jamaica prohibiting foreign exchange, nor are 
there any giving other countries preference over American films. No quota 
or contingent laws are in effect, and none is contemplated, 

CENS0R3HIP- 

The number of films censored during 1936 was 300, of which 5 percent 
were rejected. Of the rejected feature films 90 percent were American and 10 
percent British. The Government Censor of films dees not give reason for the 
rejection of an/ picture, but censorship is very strict where films show 
drunkenness or unconventional frivolity on the part of white people. Films of 
the unda.'fforld type ^ho.ving robbe.'iec and hjld ups are banned. 



2670 



-163- 



Motion pictures are censored in Kingston for showing in the whole island 
under Jamaica Law 14 of 1913, Jamaica Law 13 of 1925, and Jamaica Law 21 of 
1926. 

COMPETITION- 

The largest competitors of American films are British Gaumont, British 
International Pictures, London Films, and Korda Productions. 

Eighty percent of the films shown are American, the remaining 20 percent 
being British. 

American films are popular and are preferred to the British productions. 
COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Same as Great Britain. 
PRODUCTION- 

There is no production of motion pictures in Jamaica. 
TAXE3- 

General property taxes and income taxes are ia^Dosed on theaters. These 
taxes are coajjaratively high when compared with those in a small city in 
the United States. There are no ta.xes i;n_30sed on theater admissions, dis- 
trijuticns, or u.3on i.n.Dort3. 

THEATS.^S- 

Ja.aaiGa has 15 motion -picture theaters, with a total seating capacity 
jf 12,500. Pjpular admission price range from $0.12 to $0.36; box seats, 
$0.72. 

Jamaican audiences prefer light musical comedies. 

The yearly gross income at theaters in Jamaica is estimated at $700,- 

000. 

It is estimated that the total investment in the local motion-pic- 
ture industry (all in exhibition) is £142,000 ($698,640 at the present rate 
of exchange of $4.92 to the pound sterling), of which £100,000 ($492,000) 
is in the city of Kingston. Of this £100,000, approximately £50,000 repre- 
sents the investment of the Cinema Co. of Jamaica, Ltd., in the new air- 
conditioned theater now being constructed in this city. 



2670 



-169- 



SOUND- 



Fifteen theaters in Jamaica are wired for sound. 



IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 



1937 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



260,481 ft. 
1,023 ft. 



$3,703 
$21 



1936 - Positive sound 
Negative sound 



158,385 ft. 
10,000 ft. 



L.675 
$150 



-170- 



JAPAN 

LEGISLATION- 

The year of 1937 opened with some misgivings as regards the future 
position of American films in the Japanese market. Practically all American 
distributors predicted more official control over the motion-picture business, 
but none expected developments to take so drastic a turn as they did. 

Japan's adoption of a wartime basis of economy, in view of the un- 
settled political conditions in the Far East generally and because of the 
hostilities in China particularly, proved to be the turning point as regards 
the securing of a profitable and not too sererely regulated amount of business 
on the part of American motion-picture interests in Japan. An exchange-con- 
trol law was enacted, the application of which became increasingly severe as 
the year progressed. A complete ban on further imports of foreign films, 
except news reels, was announced in September, and the year closed with a 
highly pessimistic outlook for the future. 

On January 9, 1937, the Ministry of Finance promulgated and placed 
in effect the Exchange Control Law, instituting a license or permit system 
for all foreign-exchange transactions. According to this law, American motion- 
picture distributors, of which there are eight in the Japan market, were 
theoretically allowed to remit only 30,000 yen (about $9,000) a month to their 
home offices. Insofar as the motion-picture business is concerned, however, 
this law was not actually applied until early in July, when all of the American 
distributors were instructed to limit their remittances to that figure. 
It will be noted that prior to this time two of them had observed the regul- 
ations and had obtained the necessary permits to send the funds out of the 
country. 

It is obvious that the policy as regards imported motion-picture films 
was gradually built up during the summer months. The Exchange Control Law 
was designed primarily to control the income and outgo of funds necessary 
for ordinary commercial transactions involving actual and physical commodi- 
ties, and this serves to explain the time lag as regards its application to 
motion pictures imported from abroad. 

The Exchange Control Law was revised effective August 28, 1937, so that 
the amount that could be sent out of the country was reduced from 30,000 yen 
a month tc only 1,000 yen (only about $290) a month. The reduced amount could 
not represent royalty proceeds but had to cover only such physical properties 
as photographs, posters, office supplies and the like. 

A few weeks earlier the American distributors had been advised that in 
the future applications must be made to the Finance Ministry for permission 



2670 



to import any motion picture and at the same time an estimate must be submitted 
as to the amount of royalty likely to become payable to the American head of- 
fice for each picture. This instruction was declared to be practically impos- 
sible to observe, and considerable objection was made by the distributors. 
Despite these objections, however, the instruction remained on the books, and 
several distributors made application in the required manner. The revision of 
the Exchange Control Law on August 28 and the complete prohibition of imports 
of foreign pictures (except news reels) during the remainder of the year, an- 
nounced on September 20, obviated the necessity of making the difficult and 
troblesome estimates as to royalties likely to accrue from each particular 
picture. 

It was estimated early in November, 1937, that the total amount of frozen 
assets of the eight American motion-picture distributors in Japan approximated 
800,000 yen at that time, equal to about $232,000, and it was predicted that by 
the end of the year the figure would be increased to about 1,000,000 yen, equal 
to about $290,000. _ . 

There are no lav/s in existence in Japan giving other countries preference 
over American films. 

There are no actual quota or contingent laws in effect in Japan. The 
importation of foreign films, including American, is restricted by the Finance 
Ministry in accordance with the Exchange Control Law and such departmental or- 
dinances as may be devised from time to time. As previously pointed out, this 
ministry announced on September 20, that the importation of foreign films, with 
the exception of news reels, would be prohibited for the remainder of the year 
and until further notice., presumably w.ell into_1938... 

There is no additional legislation as such affacting the position of Amer- 
ican films in the Japanese market. It will be noted, however, that in Manchur- 
ia ( "Manchukuo" ) a State film monopoly is being set up effective December 1, 
1937. The organizers of this monopoly attempted to make agreements covering 
the purchase of films from the American distributors established there and work 
ing out of Tokyo, but the distributors agreed jointly not to sell to the monop- 
oly. Accordingly, the "Manchukuo" State film monopoly will have to depend upon 
Japan film producers and upon European film for their productions. It is felt 
locally .that the action of the American film distributors in Manchuria will 
cause the Japanese Government to proceed cautiously before attempting to insti- 
tute a similar organization in Japan Proper.... 

CENSORSHIP- . _ 

Censorship throughout 1937 .remained on, a martial-law basis, .a carry-over 
from 1936 and indicative of the present wartime economy in force in Japan. 
Continued great care was exercised by American distribators to import only such 
films as would surely pass the censors entirely or without much mutilation. 



670 



-172- 



A trend worthy of mentioning concerns the position of German films in 
this market, as well as the influence of Germany in Japan at the present time. 
In 1936 it was said that German films were not popular because of the fact 
that Nazi propaganda had been inserted in them to such an extent as to be no 
longer to the taste of the Japanese, including public and official entities. 
Late in 1936, however, announcement was made of the Anti-Comintern Agreement 
signed by Japan and Germany, and a direct and immediate result was a complete 
change in the attitude of the censors with regard to German films. German 
prestige has been on the rise in Japan, and the year 1937 closed with German 
films having regained some of their popularity and with censors reported to 
be exercising particular care in not permitting anything offensive to Germany 
to remain in either domestic or imported films. The adherence of Italy to 
the Anti-Comintern agreement early in November 1937, will undoubtedly result 
in having the censors take similar action with regard to Italian interests. 

An example of the change in the attitude of the censors may be cited. 
A few weeks ago an American World War film that has been screened in Japan 
during the past 3 years came up for recensoring in accordance with the cen- 
sor laws. Protests against the film were made by the German Embassy at 
Tokyo, and the film was not passed on the grounds that it showed German troops 
being defeated in the World War. 

According to information obtained from the censor's office in the De- 
partment of Home Affairs, Tokyo, the number of feature and short films cen- 
sored during 1936 totaled 876, this total including 533 Japanese films, 294 
American films, 25 German films, 23 French films. 4 English films, 4 Italian 
films, and 3 other European films. In view of the appreciable number censored, 
it is obvious that not only are new pictures included but also old pictures 
recensored after a period of time in accordance with the censorship regu- 
lations. It has been impossible to secure details covering the number of 
new feature films censored. Details covering the number of prints, reels, and 
meterage censored during 1936 are given in the following table, the figures 
including both features and shorts: 

No of p rints No . of reels No . of meters 

American 2,587 11,435 2,699,090 

British 71 485 113,132 

German 281 1,567 387,259 

French 199 1,473 380,851 

Other foreign 52 252 58,104 

Japanese 21^13 81, 171 1? , 267. 431 

Total 25,008 96,383 21,905,867 

It will be noted that the total meterage of loreign films censored during 
1936 was equal to 3,638,435, as compared with 3,377,281 meters censored during 



2670 



-173- 



1935. The total meterage of Japanese films censored during 1936, amounting 
to 18,267,431, compared with 16,651,811 meters censored in 1935. 

details covering the number of features censored during the first 9 
months of 1937 are given in the following table, as reported by the censor's 
office : 

No . of features Lenp;t h in meters 



Japanese 239 505,644 

American 137 301,460 

German 11 24,050 

French 10 23,596 

English 1 2,314 

Italian 1 2^.660 

Total 399 859,724 



It is impossible to give corresponding data for the first 9 months of 
1936 because of the fact that the censor's office states that it is seriously 
understaffed, and is not in a position to make the necessary compilations. 

Films imported into Japan are inspected by the customs authorities and, 
if approved, by the censor's office. Some films are not permitted entry into 
Japan by the customs, or else the customs "advise" the distributors not to 
have them reviewed by the censor because they will be banned anyway , presumably 
upon instructions of the customs. Relatively few films are rejected by the 
customs or banned by the censors, largely because the distributors exercise 
great care in selecting films for the Japanese market. The few American films 
rejected by the customs or censor in 1937 involved lack of understanding of 
the Japanese point of view upon the imperial regime. 

Censorship in Japan has been heretofore considered to be reasonable 
and followed regulations peculiar to the social and political economy and 
ideology of the country. American distributors generally have not complained 
about the censorship, and this condition existed during 1937. 

Effective April 24, 1937, the censorship fees, on foreign films only, 
were increased by 50 percent. It is of interest to point out that the defi- 
nition of a foreign film, as now specified by the Department of Home Affairs, 
includes films made with foreign capital in Japan, even though all the actors 
are Japanese and the language is Japanese. 



2670 



-174- 



For reference sake, it may be added that the censorship fees prior to 
April 24, 1937, were 1 sen per meter of the first print of any subject and 
1/2 sen per meter for subsequent prints, provided they were offered for cen- 
soring within 3 months following the inspectior of the first print. A film 
that has been censored may be shown up to a period not exceeding 3 years. 
After 3 years, the film is treated as a new subject and must be recensored, 
the charges being the same as for the original print and copies. The regu- 
lations now in force are exactly the same, save that the rates on all foreign 
films, including American and European, are now 1-1/2 sen per meter for the 
first print and 3/4 sen per meter for additional prints of the same subject, 
if offered for censoring within 3 months after the first print was censored. 

In announcing the increased rate applicable only to foreign films, the 
Department of Home Affairs stated that it was necessitated by the greater 
amount of work required to censor foreign films, largely by reason of language 
difficulties . 

COMPETITION- 

The greatest competitors of American films in Japan are the Japanese 
films, the competition from European films being of secondary importaice. 
The data covering films censored in 1936 and during the first 9 months of 1937 
give the relative position of American films in the Japanese market which av- 
erages 34 percent. Opposed to the fact that the average American film probably 
brings in m^re cash than the average Japanese film is the fact that the 
Japanese theater outlets are largely controlled or dominated by the domestic 
producers, who show American films mainly to round out their own programs. 

American films generally are well received in the Japanese market, and, 
insofar as the educated classes are concerned, are probably preferred to 
the domestic film. The masses however, prefer Japanese films as a general 
rule, because admission charges are lower and because they can understand the 
dialog and the themes of the films. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The laws of Japan theoretically protect foreign producers from piracy. 
Equally important as a deterrent to piracy is the fact that it has been proved 
to be an unprofitable undertaking. It is possible that the last named is 
the more important factor which causes piracy to be practically unkrown in 
the Japanese market. A few cases are known, but they usually involve very old 
films, and settlement is usually reached outside the courts. 

It may be noted that it is impossible to copyright any particular film in 
Japan. The trade mark of the producing or distributing company may be regis- 
tered, however, and that action apparently serves to reduce piracy somewhat. 



2670 



-175- 



Acoording to the general opinion of American film distributors it is ex- 
ceedingly difficult to obtain satisfaction from the Japanese courts, litiga- 
tion being featured by innumerable and costly delays. 

PRODUCTION- 

Data covering the number of domestic films produced during 1937 are not 
yet available. An indication is afforded, however, by the fact that during the 
first 9 months of 1937 a total of 239 features with an aggregate length of 
505,644 meters were passed by the censors. 

During 1936, according to the "Cinema Year Book of Japan, 1936-37," 
the total number of feature films produced reached 558, including 300 all- 
talkie, 39 part-talkie, 82 sound and 137 silent films. 

Japan has the reputation of being the largest producer of motion pictures 
for home consumption in the world. This reputation is based largely upon 
quantity of production, with the average quality definitely inferior to Ameri- 
can and Europaan productions. It is generally accepted that Japanese producers 
cannot make sufficient quality feature films to supply the domestic market. 
During the present wartime economy, however, the domestic producers have 
gained ground by making so-called patriotic films, and at the same time the 
production of news rsels of the fighting in China has showed phenomenal ad- 
vance . 

« 

The prohibition of imports of foreign films during the last quarter 
o£ 1937 and possibly during the first quarter of 1938 is based upon the 
theory that distributors of American and European films can show films held 
in stocks within the country, these stocks being reported to be adequate un- 
til about March or April, 1933. Accordingly, it may be added that this 
prohibition does not imply that domestic producers can supply the full market 
demand. Rather, it represents action taken to prevent the outgo of funds in 
order to maintain the value of the yen on foreign money markets. Whether or 
not the restriction on foreign film showings will prove advantageous in the 
long run to the domestic producers remains to be seen. 

According to the "Cinema Year Book of Japan, 1336-37", the aggregate 
authorired capital of major producing companies in Japan approximates 53,270,- 
COO yen, equal to about $15,488,000. The paid-in capital is, of course, con- 
siderably less. In February 1936, it was estimated that the paid-in capital 
of all producing companies totaled 22,500,000 yen, equal to about $6,525,000. 
It is believed that this figure has shov/n relatively little increase since 
that time, although it is possible that the total paid-in capital on December 
1, 1937, may approximate 25,000,000 yen, equal to $7,250,000. 

It is admitted that the technique of Japanese producers is generally 
below that of American and European producers. The Japanese film companies. 



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however, are gradually improving their output as a result of the adoption oi 
better equipment and more careful direction. 

Several American film distributors have experimented with "dubbing" 
American films in the Japanese language, but the general reception v/as so 
poor as to cause them to discontinue efforts along this line. The predominant 
language in Japan is Japanese, although the number of Japanese who have ac- 
quired a working knowledge cf foreign languages, principally English and to a 
lesser extent German, is steadily increasing. No regulations exist relative 
to the "dubbing" of foreign films in Japan or elsewhere. As previously indi- 
cated, the results obtained from experimental efforts were such, as to dis- 
courage further efforts as regards "dubbing" 

TAXES- 

Taxes on theater admissions in Japan during 1937 showed no change from . 
those of 1936. These taxes, representing city and prefectural taxes, continue . 
to be moderate and approximated only 2 percent of gross receipts. The taxes 
and methods of assessments vary from city to city. 

Taxes on theater owners as well as on distributors during 1937 showed 
considerable advance because of the necessity on the part of the Japanese 
Government of securing funds for carrying on the fighting in China. The taxes 
may vary somewhat in different localities, but a good idea as to the extent 
of taxation is afforded by the following figures covering taxes which must be 
paid during 1937 by one of the prominent American film distributors in Tokyo. 

The business-profits tax totals 9.865 percent of njt profits, including 
4 percent for the national tax and 5.865 percent for prefectural and city 
taxes. The special excess-profits tax totals 17.25 percent on all net profits 
aggregating more than 7 percent of the paid-in capital. The ordinary income 
tax totals 26.95 percent of net profits and includes 22 percent of national 
tax and 4.95 percent surtax, the latter representing city and prefectural 
taxes. A capital tax is also collected, this amounting to 0.01 percent of 
the paid-in capital. In addition, there is a graduated excess-income tax, 
collectible as follows: 4 percent on net profits exceeding 10 percent of the 
paid-in capital; 10 percent on net profits exceeding 20 percent of paid-in 
capital, and 20 percent on net profits exceeding 30 percent and more of paid- 
in capital. 

The taxes on imports of films were practically doubled during the year ^ 
under review. Prior to August, 1937, foreign films were dutiable at the rate 
of 11.13 yen per kin (1 kin equals 1.323 pounds). Since August, an additional 
20 percent ad valorem commodity tax has been assessed, this tax being col- 
lected on an arbitrary valuation fixed by the Finance Ministry amounting to 
65 yen per kin in the case of black and white prints and 95 yen per kin in the 
case of colored prints. 



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THEATERS- 

Data covering the numbers of theaters in Japan vary within relatively 
narrow margins. A survey made in Tokyo on this point revealed that each 
of the eight American film distributors had different figures for the number 
of theaters wired for sound and the total number, including those not wired. 

According to the "Cinema Year Book of Japan, 1936-37," the total number 
of motion-picture theaters in Japan at the end of 1936 was 1,627, of which 
1,368 were wired for sound. These totals compare with da+a secured from the 
Department of Home Affairs as at the beginning of 1936 showing a total of 
1,767 theaters, of which 1,469 were wired for sound. 

According to data obtained from one American motion picture distributor 
in Tokyo, who makes a point of keeping accurate statistics on exhibition 
and distribution, there was in mid-November of 1937 a total of 1,717 theaters 
in Japan Proper, including 1,353 wired for sound reproduction. 

These figures indicate the difficulty of making any definite statement 
with regard to the total number of theaters in Japan, as well as the number 
wired for sourd. It is believed, however, that the figures attributed to the 
Department of Home Affairs as at the beginning of 1936 are as correct as any 
obtainable and that the data quoted in the preceding paragraph are tentatively 
correct for conditions existing in mid-November of 1937. 

It may be added that of the total number of theaters at the end of 1936 
reported by the "Cinema Year Book of Japan, 1936-37," 1,130 showed Japanese 
pictures only, 64 showed foreign pictures only, and 433 showed both foreign 
and Japanese pictures. These figures give a good idea as to the outlet pos- 
sibilities for foreign films in this market. It will be remembered that most 
of the motion-picture houses in Japan are owned or controlled by the domestic 
producing companies, thus limiting the possibilities for foreign films. 

Because of the fact that no accurate records are made of the seating 
capacity of theaters in Japan it is impossible to make any definite statement 
on this point. The position is complicated by the fact that practically all 
houses, particularly in the smaller cities and in the rural districts, have 
appreciable amounts of space sold as standing room. It is estimated, however, 
that the total seating capacity of all houses will approximate 1,000,000 and 
that between 100,000 to 200,000 additional may be accommodated in the stand- 
ing-room sections. 

No better summary of the favorite type of Japanese pictures is available 
than the following statement, extracted from the semi-official "Japan Year 
Book," 1937 edition, published in Tokyo by the Foreign Affairs Association of 
Japan: 



-178- 



"The substance of Japanese pictures is varied. The recent 
tendency favors a seriou^ view of life, and audiences are more im- 
pressed by what is implied than by what is expressed. The Japanese 
people are fond of tragedy. With few exceptions, pictures without- 
tears cannot be expected to prove financial successes. Especially 
the women, who constitute 50 percent of the spectators, feel disap- 
pointed if they have not shed tears over a tragic scene. Influenced 
by American pictures, comedies have come to be appreciated, but to 
satisfy the audience they must have at least 30 percent of tragic ele- 
ments." 

Japanese producers have specialized in the past in making pictures of the 
old dramas, corresponding roughly to "Westerns" in the United States, but lately 
they have begun to make so-called "modern" pictures. The lack of scenario 
writers have thus far proved to be a serious handicap to the filming of modern 
pictures. The "grinding out" policy of local producers also prevents the 
making of really significant pictures of any type, save in the case of a few 
outstanding exceptions. 

It may be noted that during 1937 greater attention was directed to the 
making of war films, featuring the exploits of Japanese troops in China. 
A great increase in the number of news reels also occurred during 1937, due 
largely to the patriotic fervor which seized the country as a result of the 
China hostilities, the news reels showing local scenes as well as scenes from 
North China and the Shanghai area. 

As regards foreign pictures, tastes for pictures change periodically; 
Pictures with plenty of action and with a minimum of dialog are naturally 
preferred. So-called "problem" films generally appeal only to the foreigr 
residents and to the relatively small number of Japanese who are acquainted 
with Western psychology and with the English language. Some time ago it 
was observed that the foreign films which appealed most to the average theater- 
goer in Japan included comedies, animal, military, and gangster pictures. 
These types of films are still popular, although the military films are now 
carefully censored and possibly banned because of the present political situ- 
ation in Japan. As a matter of fact, the theatergoing public in Japan has 
comparatively little choice in its foreign pictures, inasmuch as many excel- 
lent pictures, which might prove highly popular, are not imported because of 
censorship regulations. 

According to investigations made by the Department of Home Affairs, the 
actual number of movie-goers who paid admission fees during 1936 aggregated 
202,65S,784, an increase of 17,736,299 when compared with the total in 1935. 
As pointed out in the "Cinema Year Book of Japan, 1936-37," the 1936 total 
represents only from 60 percent to 70 percent of the actual number of admis- 
sions, the difference being due to persons seeing motion pictures at public 
halls, temporary show places, and the like. This publication estimates the 



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total number seeing motion pictures during 1936 at between 320,000,000 and 
330.000,000. 

The gross annual income during 1936 and 1937 approximated 50,000,000 yen 
to 55,000,000 yen, including admissions paid to see Japanese and foreign 
pictures. If the average admission fee is placed at about 0.20 yen, it will 
be seen that receipts during 1936 were somewhat lower, or about 40,000,000 yen. 

sound- 
As previously indicated, data covering the total number of theaters wired 
for sound vary somewhat. It may be assumed, however, that at least 85 percent 
of all theaters in Japan Proper are wired for sound. 

The prospects of American companies not already represented in this market 
for selling sound equipment to the houses not yet wired are practically nil, 
because domestic makers, some of which are branch plants of American companies 
or Japanese concerns making use of American patents, dominate the market 
for quality units while Japanese concerns making equipment more or less copied 
after foreign units supply the cheaper demand. 

Since practically all of the market can be supplied by companies in 
Japan, it is believed that it would be next to impossible for an importer at 
present to obtain the necessary import permit to bring in American sound 
equipment. This policy has been followed in the case of machinery and other 
products and is designed to prevent the out-go of money for such commodities 
as are made in Japan to an extent sufficient to meet domestic requirements. 
Accordingly, such factors as new features contained in American equipment are 
of scant importance inasmuch as the importer cannot purchase the equipment 
by reason of existing regulations governing foreign exchange. 

liMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 3,2«;5,669 ft. $70,111 

Negative sound 197,104 ft. $2,705 

1936 - Positive sound 4,816,130 ft. $90,617 

Negative sound 74,717 ft. $1,155 



LATVIA 

LEGISLATION- 

On October 8, 1931, the Latvian Government adopted a law governing tran- 
sactions in foreign exchange. Such transactions are permitted only to the 
Bank of Latvia and to those banks designated by it. Furthermore, all trans- 



2670 



-ISO- 



actions in foreign arrency are subject to the control of the Currency Commifa- 
sion of the Ministry of Finance, which has full control of imports. This law 
gives the Ministry of Finance the right to examine the books of all firms, 
organizations and persons in order to ascertain whether the law has been 
complied with. 

American films enjoy the same rights as films of other countries. There 
are no laws giving preference to films produced in any country. 

On October 13, 1931, the Latvian Government adopted a regulation hy 
which a quota system was introduced in Latvia. For the administration of 
the quota system a Commission for the Regulation of Imports was established, 
which, in 1934, was amalgamated with the Currency Commission, which has full 
power to control imports and payments in foreign currency. 

Motion-picture films, like most other commodities, are subject to import 
quotas in Latvia. Quotas are usually granted to licensed importers for a peri- 
od of from 3 to 4 months in advance, and special permits for imports in ex- 
cess of quotas are often granted as well. The Currency Commission has not 
been particularly strict in regard to imports of films, and local film-im- 
porting houses, as a general rule, have had no particular difficulties in 
obtaining quotas and also additional permits. 

CENSORSHIP- 

During the first 6 months of 1937, 313 films of a total length of 346,- 
064 meters were censored by the Latvian Film Censoring Board. Of the 313 
films censored during the above period 19 films were rejected, of which 11 
were American, 5 German, 2 Soviet Union, and 1 English. Of the 19 films re- 
jected for display, 57.9 percent were American. These were rejected as being 
likely to have an undesirable influence on the local population. 

According to article 7 of the Law on Motion Picture Houses, adopted 
in 1924, which, with a number of amendments and supplements, is still in force, 
only such films may be displayed in local motion picture houses as have 
previously been censored by the "Kinocenzura" (Film Censoring Board) , attached 
to the Ministry of Public Affairs. Films displayed to members of clubs and 
associations must also be censored. 

According to article f of the law, the display of a film may be prohi- 
bited if its content insults religious feelings, encourages brutality or in- 
jures the morals of the public, is adverse to the State, is apt to create 
disorder, or harms good relations with other countries. The Film Censoring 
Board may also require that a certain part of an undesirable play or song be 
eliminated. 

Article 9 provides that children from 6 to 16 years of age are per- 



2670 



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mitted to attend only such performances as, in the opinion of the Ministry of 
Education, are fit for minors. 

Article 10 of the law provides that the title and the written text on 
the films, as well as advertising posters, are to be censored. Film texts not 
in compliance with the requirements of articles 8 and 9 of the law may be re- 
jected. The Film Censoring Board may also require that the program of the 
performance and the adverti^-:jients of films in local papers be censored. 

Article 14 of the law requires the display of locally produced news 
reels in motion-picture houses at some time during each performance. Article 
16 of the law provides that these provisions shall not be applied to films 
of scientific or educational nature used by educational institutions. 

On June 16, 1934, the Government published an amendment to the "Regu- 
lation Governing the Use of the State Language," on the basis of which the 
Film Censoring Board ruled that, after July 15, 1934, only the State language 
can be used in the descriptive text on all moving pictures, thereby prohibit- 
ing the employment of either the German or Russian languages, or both, in ad- 
dition to Lettish, which is the state language. Representatives of motion 
picture houses in Latvia petitioned the Government for a modification of this 
law which would allow the use of other languages as subtitles on films, but 
without avail. 

COMPETinON- 

German producers are the largest competitors of American films. During 
the first 6 months of 1937, Germany produced 31.7 percent of the total number 
of films censored here. During the first 6 months of 1937, 33.9 percent of 
films censored were of United States origin. 

Latvia is not a film-producing country and the pictures produced locally 
are principally news reels, landscapes, educational, scientific, and adver- 
tising films, which are of interest to the local population only. 

Films of United States origin are popular in Latvia, though the English 
language is understood by only a small number of the public. American films 
in the German language are preferred. There is, of course, a certain amount 
of criticism with regard to pictures of United States origin, many of them 
being entirely foreign to the thought of the local population. However, 
there is no doubt that films of United States origin are well received, even 
though German pictures are perhaps more readily understood. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

The Latvian Copyright Law became effective on May 15, 1937, and abolished 
the former Russian law which previously governed copyright matters in Latvia. 

2670 



-J.82-- 



Article 2 of this law covers all literary, artistic, and scientific works, 
including motion-picture filjis. 

PRODUCTION- 

During the first 6 months of 1937, 43 films of domestic origin, of 
a total length of 9,758 meters, were passed by the Film Censoring Board. The 
films produced locally were of the following type: 1 sound comedy of 220 
meters, 34 news reels and landscapes of 7,007 meters, 1 educational film of 
2,155 meters, and 7 advertising films of 376 meters. 

The film industry in Latvia is still in its infancy, and except for the 
weekly news reels, the display of which is compulsory at every performance, 
and some educational films, a very limited amount of films is produced. Latvia 
has as yet no real film studio, and whatever dramatic pictures have been so 
far produced were practically all photographed in the open air. Only one 
dramatic sound film of normal length, entitled "Tautas Dels" ("The Son of 
the People"), which was produced in 1934 by the local firm "Atlantic Film," 
may be considered as inviting international interest. Other films of this 
nature consisted mainly of a compilation of patriotic scenes and cannot be 
considered as dramas, being too short and obviously of local interest only. 

At the close of 1935, the Latvian State Electrical Factory "VEF" com- 
pleted the installation of a motion-picture film laboratory which provides 
facilities for complete manufacture of sound films produced in Latvia. For- 
merly, such films had to be sent abroad for completion of the synchronization. 
The local film industry is, however, limited to the production of cultural and 
propaganda films. Plans to establish the motion-picture industry on a larger 
scale have so far not been carried out, because of lack of capital and ex- 
perience. 

The newsreels are produced by individuals and the synchronization is 
carried out in the motion-picture film laboratory of the Latvian State Elec- 
tric Factory "VEF." The capital invested by the individuals engaged in the 
production of newsreels is not known, and it is believed to be negligible. 

The Government has invested a certain amount of capital in the instal- 
lation of the motion-picture film laboratory in the Latvian State Electri- 
cal Factory "VEF, "for the completion of sound films. The Government, how- 
ever, has refused to finance individuals and firms engaged in making motion 
pictures. 

The technique of the film industry in Latvia is still in its infancy, 
and there can be no comparison with the film industry of the United States. 



2670 



-183- 



Apparently there would be no objection to the "dubbing" of American 
films in the native language. It must, however, be remembered that in Latvia 
there are only approximately 1,950,000 inhabitants and about 100 motion- 
picture theaters, so that "dubbing" for this market might not pay. The State 
language is Lettish, which predominates in the country and is understood by 
practically all minorities here. 

No regulations exist in Latvia requiring the "dubbing" of foreign films. 
Sound films in any language may be displayed here, but the Lettish text must 
appear on the screen. American films "dubbed" in German are frequently shown 
here. 

The distribution of films in Latvia has been carried out by film distri- 
buting offices which are also importers. Their distribution area covers the 
Baltic States of Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania. A number of the distri- 
butors also own motion-picture theaters. At present there are in Latvia 9 
film-distributing offices, of which 3 represent American houses. The capital 
invested by the distributors and by exhibitors is not available. 

No Government subsidy has been granted nor assistance rendered in the 
fostering of the domestic motion-picture production, except a certain amount 
for the establishment of the motion-picture film laboratory in the Latvian 
State Electrical Factory, "VEF." 

TAXES- 

Trade licenses consist of five categories, varying from 5 to 300 lats 
annually. First-class motion-picture theaters are subject to the license of 
the first category and pay 200 lats annually, whereas smaller motion-picture 
houses pay license fees in the second and third categories, amounting to 150 
lats and 75 lats, respectively. 

For tickets costing up to 1.20 lats, the tax is 25 percent; for tickets 
costing from 1.21 lats to 2.00 lats, the tax is 30 percent. On tickets to 
educational performances the tax is 15 percent of the admission price. In 
provincial theaters, the tax levied on tickets averages 20 percent, except 
in the case of films of educational nature, when the tax is 15 percent. 

Import license fees are based on the total value of imports of each film 
during the preceding year, and vary from 250 lats to 70,000 lats annually. 
It is estimated that film importers pay for an import license 5,000 to 8,000 
lata annually, according to their turnover. 

Import duty imposed on films is high in Latvia. The maximum rate is 
20 lats and the minimum rate is 10 lats per kilogram of exposed films. 

In addition to the above taxes, importers pay a special tax, for the 



267C 



-184- 



Culture Fund, in the amount of 0.15 lat per meter of imported exposed films 
displayed in Latvia. 

THEATERS- 

In Latvia there are about 100 motion-picture theaters, all wired for 
sound. The total seating capacity of these theaters is about 20,000, and the 
average admission price in first-class motion picture theaters is 1 lat; 
in second-class theaters, 0.75 lat; and in third-class theaters, 0.50 lat. 
Sentimental dramas and musical comedies are preferred. 

In 1936, the gross income of 34 motion-picture theaters located in 
Riga amounted to 3,081,857 lats. The gross income of about 63 motion-picture 
theaters located in provincial towns is not available. According to esti- 
mates, their annual average income is 2,000,000 lats. 

SOUND- 

There are about 100 motion-picture theaters in Latvia, all of. which 
are wired for sound. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 510,605 ft. $9,476 
Negative sound 

1936 - Positive sound 494,433 ft. $7,954 
Negative s^und — - 



LIBERIA 

LEGISLATION- 

There are no laws in existence prohibiting foreign exchange, nor are 
there are restrictions imposed against the importation and exportation of 
currency. 

Although prices are often quoted in dollars, American currency is not 
acceptable either to the Government in payment of taxes or to the traders. 
English silver and Liberian copper 1/2, 1, and 2 cent coins are the medium 
of exchange. The Liberian dollar is computed at the standard commercial 
rate of $4.80 to the pound sterling. 

The only bank operating in Liberia is the Bank of Monrovia, Inc. , which 
handles all matters of foreign exchange. 



2670 



-185- 



There are no laws giving other countries preference over American films,, 
nor >,re there any quota or contingent . laws in effect or contemplated. Fur- 
ther©, there is no legislation which might reduce or prevent American dis- 
tribution of motion pictures. 

CENSORSHIP- . : 

There have been no reports of any films c nsored. The importation of 
films to date has been nominal. No films have been rejected, and the ques1ii?5ii 
of censorship has not arisen. It is not believed that even when the industry 
has been developed there will be strict censorship . 

COMPETITION- 

British films are the largest competitors of American pictures, princi-r 
pally because of the availability of the market. It is reported that; 507. 
percent of the films shown are American and 50 percent British. American 
films are very well received; in fact, there is a decided preference Xox, 
them. British film distributors are seeking to find a market in Liberia, a- 
field in which American distributors have, shown no interest whatso:e:ver-.- 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

While the question of protection of copyrights and piracy has. not .arisen; 
With regard to the motion-picture industry and it is not thought that it yfil.h,-: 
there is adequate legislation to take care of such matters. . -r 

PRODUCTION- z 

There is no local productior of films. One or two amateur photographers 
residing in Liberia have from time to time taken films of local interest 
such as tribal ceremonies and celebrations and, after sending the pictures., 
abroad for develQping, have shown .them in Monrovia. These films have beea 
shown to good-sized audiences. , 

TAXES- 

Taxation on photographic material and apparatus and appliances is .npt 
high. At the present time there are no taxes imposed upon theaters or dis- 
tributors. . ■ r.:: 

THEATERS- 

The motion-picture industry in Liberia is as yet undeveloped, though thete- 
is a keen interest in picture-shows. The field may be limited but steady, 
and lieretpfore an organii;ation known as the BER Motion Picture .Co . . from time 
to. time s&ci^r.ed. 35ld iilms Jrx)m America and exhibited them ija Jvlonroyia,^ There 



2670 



-186- 



is no theater in Liberia, and a dance hall known as the Pavillion is generally 
used. The shows were well attended, and even though the pictures were silent 
fourth-rate ones, cut, and of rare old vintage, they were met with great en- 
thusiasm and applause. The BER Motion Picture Co. appears now to be at a 
standstill because of its inability to secure American films and the with- 
drawal of several of its most dependable supporters. 

The demand for motion pictures is being met by a local educational 
institution and private club which use a 16-mm. silent machine. 

The American rubber interests in Liberia have two 35-mm. sound projec- 
tors for their private use. 

A group of financially responsible and energetic persons, composed of 
high Liberian officials and foreign traders, recently organized the Liberian 
Entertainments Co. and are primarily interested in the exhibition of motion 
pictures in Liberia. They have established a working capital of £600, and 
plans are under way for the erection of a modern theater with a seating capaci- 
ty of 600. A sound projector (35 mm.) has already been secured, and it is 
reported that shortly the inauguration of the first sound film theater will 
take place in Monrovia. 

Until the building of the theater, plans for which have been drawn and a 
building site located, the Liberian Entertainments Company will lease the 
Pavillion exclusively for the purpose of exhibiting motion pictures. Admis- 
sion prices will range from 3 pence to 6 shillings (6 cents to 72 cents), 
and it is reported that there will be from three to four shows weekly with 
from two to three program-. A program will consist if a feature picture, 
news re@l, and a comdy. 

Contracts have already been made by the Liberian Entertainments Co. 
with British film producers, and arrangements have been completed to secure 
films on a rental basis. The managing director of the company has recently 
returned from a trip including Nigeria and the Gold Coast, where he has been 
able to conclude tentative arrangements for the distribution of films from 
Monrovia and reports that the Liberian Entertainments Co. will act as the 
distributing center for films for several exhibitors in British colonies and 
mandates south of Monrovia. He hopes also to conclude arrangements with motion- 
picture concerns in Sierra Leone and to include the distribution of films to 
that point. He states further that the industry is not organized on the coast 
and that it consists mainly of independent exhibitors who rent films indi- 
vidually. The company also expects to distribute and exhibit motion pictures 
in other coastal settlements of the Republic as well as in certain sections 
of the interior. 

It is possible that films which will be distributed to the English pos- 
sessions may have to be censored. No "dubbing" will be necessary, as English 

2670 



-187- 



is the official language in Liberia and the British colonies. 

The Liberian Entertainments Co. has been unable to secure contacts with 
American film p-oducTrs for the rental or distribution of films. The pref- 
erence here and along the entire coast is for American pictures, and the 
Liberian Entertainments Co. hopes to be able to conclude rental and distri- 
bution arrangements with American companies for first-class sound films, 
particularly comedies, animated cartoons, Wild West and dramatic feature 
films, musical comedies, shorts, news reels, etc. This company will welcome 
correspondence with any company desiring to distribute films in this market. 

As the Liberian Entertainments Co. seems reliable and financially able 
to promote and carry out its contemplated program and to develop and organize 
the motion-picture industry in Liberia and certain points on the West African 
Coast, it represents a contact worthy of consideration by American film pro- 
ducers and distributors. At the outset the organization is limiting its ac- 
tivities and expects to enlarge its operations gradually. 

Economic conditions at the present time in Liberia are favorable, and, 
while the civilized population is relatively small, motion pictures have 
a definite appeal even to the mass of natives who cannot speak English. 

Definite success, in view of possibilities offered, may well result from 
the Liberian Entertainments Co.'s venture into the motion-picture industry 
in West Africa. 

SOUND- 

There are no theaters or buildings in Liberia wired for the showing 
of sound films, and the prospects of selling sound equipment as the industry 
is developed locally appear to be fairly good. 

IMPORTS FROM THE UNITED STATES- 

1937 - Positive sound 59,331 ft. $3,705 
Negative sound - — 

1936 - Positive sound 29,970 ft. $1,722 
Negative sound 

* * * 
LITHUANIA 

LEGISL.\TI0N- 

In accordance with a law promulgated on October 1, 1935, and since extended 



2670 



-188- 



until October 1, 1938, all transactions in foreign exchange must be approved 
by the Foreign Exchange Commission of the Ministry of Finance. No diffi- 
culties, however, are being encountered in procuring the necessary foreign 
exchange in settlement of American commercial accounts. Lithuania is still 
on the gold standard, and the litas, the unit of currency, continues to be 
quoted at $1.1689. 

There are no laws in effect in Lithuania giving other countries preference 
over American films, nor are there any quota or contingent laws on motion- 
picture films in Lithuania; so far as can be ascertained, none are contem- 
plated at the present time. 

By an extension s,* the Lithuanian import license system, effective 
February 13, 1936, cinema films were included in the list of products for 
the impor-^ of which a license is required. 

There is no legislation in effect in Lithuania at the present time 
which might reduce or prevent American distribution of motion pictures. 

CENSORSHI- 

The Lithuanian Cinema Censorship Law became effective on September 1. 
1932, and is still in force. 

The total number of films censored during the first 9 months of 1937, 
amounted to 112, of which only 23 films were prohibited demor stration by the 
Film Censor of the Ministry of the Interior. Of the total number of films 
prohibited demonstration, 16 were of German production 5 of American produc- 
tion, and 2 of Soviet production. Of the total number of American films 
prohibited, two films were rejected by the Film Censor for their ultra- 
criminal nature, one film for its pessimistic content, one film for its al- 
leged banality, and one film for its alleged immoral content. 

While only 3 percent of the total number of films censored were pro- 
hibited demonstration by the Film Censor, it is believed that the censorship 
of films in Lithuania is rather strict, since virtually every film is subject 
to cutting before being shown, which often spoils the continuity. 

COMPETITION- 

According to official statistics, of the 689 films demonstrated in 
Lithuania during the first 9 months of 1937, 308 films were of German origin, 
259 of American origin, and the remainder of French, British, Lithuanian, 
Soviet, and Czechoslovak origin. 

The predominance of German films on the Lithuanian market is explained 
by the resumption of trade relations between Lithuania and Germany on August 



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15, 1536, and to the fact that the German language is widely understood in 
the principal urban parts of this country. 

American films in general are well receivjd by cinema goers throughout 
the country, particularly drama with "happy endings" and news reels. Locally 
produced news reels are unable to present the slightest competition to any 
foreign film owing to their poor production from a technical point of view, 
as well as to their liruitations . 

It may be stated that Ameri;an news reels are preferred in this country 
to news reels of European origin. 

COPYRIGHT RELATIONS- 

Copyrig^. ' p.-;tection in Lithuania is extended only to Lithuanian citizens 
under th3 former Imperial Russian Copyright Law which is still in force and in 
the absence of specific copyright conventions. So far as can be ascertained 
only . one copyright convention has been concluded by Lithuania with a foreign 
country, namely, with Switzerland. No difficulties have arisen in connec- 
tion with the showing of foreign motion-picture films and no case of plagi- 
arism has been reported. 

PRODUCTION- 

According to the American Consulate's information, approximately 50 
synchronized news reels having a total length of about 10,000 meters were 
produced up to October 15, 1937, by the firm "Musu Lietuva" (Our Lithuania) , 
of Kaunas, holder of a concession covering the production of domestic news 
reels throughout the country. These news reels depict the more important 
and interesting events in the political and social life of the country. 
Furthermore, this firm has produced during the same period three cultural films 
depicting developments in agriculture, dairying, and in the production of 
butter. The total length of these three films was 4,500 meters. 

The Cultural Department of the Ministry of Education has produced a 
cultural film entitled "Lietuva." The film, having a length of approximately 
1,700 meters, was taken in Lithuania and then forwarded to the concern "Tobis," 
in Berlin, for technical prepa:"ati:);i . It i3 a sound film and the preparation 
costs amounted to 20,000 lits. 

The firm "Musu Lietuva" began the production of synchronized local news 
reels only in the besinninj of the year 1937. The lack of capital and experts 
Las so far prevented a successfal production of such news reels, rfhich are 
of a very poor quality in all respects. The local technique cannot be com- 
parad with the Amsrican technique by any means. 

There is no objection to American films being "rlubbed" in the Lithuanian 



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or any other understandable language. The predominant language in this 
countrj is the Lithuanian language, but German and Russian are generally 
understood. 

There are no regulations requiring that foreign films must be "dubbed" 
when demonstrated in Lithuania, but the text of all films must be in the 
Lithuanian language. This is usually done in Latvia. 

TAXES- 

The current Amusement Tax Law became effective August 1, 1932, and 
provides for taxes to be collected from motion picture house ticke+s in 
the following manner: tickets up to 1 lit, 20 percent; from 1 lit to 2 lits, 
30 percent; and over 2 lits, 40 percent. These taxes are considered as rather 
high by owners of motion-picture theaters in comparison with the local stan- 
dard of living. In addition, the usual turnover tax is collected from owners 
of cinema theaters on the basis of gross receipts. 

Licensed importers must pay a tax of 350 lits per annum for a license 
to import merchandise, including motion-picture films, having a value up to 
10,000 lits during the calendar year. For each additional 10,000 lits or 
fraction thereof, 150 lits must be paid. 

THEATERS- 

According to reliable information, there are at present in Lithuania, 
including the Klaipeda Territory, 69 theaters. Drama